This was the line-up facing me on my recent visit to the farmers' market. The farmer himself was grating a stick of wasabi at the stand and offered me a smudge. "Go ahead, it won't kill you," were his words of encouragement.
I liked the bite, and the very green flavor of an absolutely fresh wasabi. It was exciting.
I decided to take one into my home. 一個を持ち帰り。
Cut in half...半分にしたら。。。
I decided that I would grate up some wasabi meat and make a dressing: a radical use for a radical root, with which I could very lightly dress some naked veggies. Kind of a return to my own California roots...
Fresh wasabi renders a much softer kick than the tube kind, and the color is also more delicate.チューブで買うわさびより味も色も穏やか。
I added some lemon juice, salt, sugar, and olive oil.
Totally radical. 過激な緑！
As a side dish to the salad, I made a little flavored rice, based on the recipe found here. サラダに合わせるご飯でキノコご飯を作った。
More than once, I've been captivated watching a Japanese friend wield a knife to render slices of carrots into sakura blossoms. My own efforts were less fluent.
Maybe if I sent it home to my parents, they'd put it on the fridge. Only after asking me if it was supposed to be a fat man running to catch the bus, however. A crowd of these fat men would put anyone off of their meal. So I went abstract.
Not my proudest moment, but I did manage some kind of flower-like shapes. 何となく。
These went into my rice cooker with some soy sauce, konbu, sake, mirin. Also I included some lovely fall mushrooms.
The result was a happy little side bowl of rice. It was content to play the silent support to my more outspoken salad.