Saturday, May 21, 2016

The Zen of Fish: Everything I Knew About Sushi Was Wrong


I just finished The Zen of Fish, and I am now completely and totally intimidated by sushi.

Author Trevor Corson observed a female sushi-apprentice and her classmates over a 12-week class at the California Sushi Academy, reporting on the personalities, the fish, and the history of the fish. And I now understand why the chef has been scowling at me from behind the sushi bar all these years. To wit:
1. Stirring green globs of wasabi into your soy sauce overwhelms your capacity for taste and smell and is very distressing to the chef, who probably got up at 4:30 a.m. to find the freshest fish possible--fish that you can no longer taste.

And by the way, real wasabi is a rare plant that is notoriously difficult to grow; what you're eating is a mixture of horseradish, mustard powder, citric acid, yellow dye no. 5 and blue dye no. 1. Which you have now mixed in soy sauce to make soy goo. Which won't kill germs or parasites, contrary to urban myth. Only your tastebuds. Only the chef's self-esteem.