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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The ugly truth, discovered and revealed.

I have just returned from lunch. A quaint little sushi establishment named after the master who taught the kid from the East Coast how to stand up for himself, like a "crane", located in the outskirts of Chelsea and the West Village. Over a platter of Dragon Roll and tekka maki, to celebrate a coworkers departure abroad, I learned a terrible and dark secret. Although not groundbreaking for anyone else other than me, I felt like the kid not picked out of a pool of kids for street sports. Today's revelation, for me, is wasabi. According to Wikipedia, coworkers and other sources this is the "dirty" truth :

Almost all sushi bars in America, and some cheap ones in Japan, serve imitation (seiyō) wasabi (see Etymology section, below) because authentic wasabi is relatively more expensive. Although harder to find, real wasabi powder (from Wasabia japonica plant) is a convenient way to experience true wasabi's remarkable flavor, but most commercially available "wasabi" powders contain no true wasabi at all. Most utilize a powdered imitation made from horseradish, mustard seed, and green food coloring (sometimes Spirulina). Whether real or imitation the powder is mixed with an equal amount of water to make a paste.


To distinguish between the true variety of wasabi and the imitation product, real wasabi is known in Japan as hon-wasabi (本山葵), meaning original, or true wasabi.


Any questions ??


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