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Re:Re: Umeboshi.....eh?

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  • James Eckman
    ... I m positive that outside of 3-4 select areas in the US, that asking for umeboshi would get you a completely blank look. Asking in anything but an Asian
    Message 1 of 23 , Feb 3, 2007
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      > Posted by: "Jason Adams"
      > America has lots of very nice "200 years ago our ancestors brought
      > *this* over, look at how much *better* we've made it since then" going
      > on.

      I'm positive that outside of 3-4 select areas in the US, that asking for
      umeboshi would get you a completely blank look. Asking in anything but
      an Asian market in those select areas will probably get you a blank look.

      > So if I wanted an AUTHENTIC umeboshi experience, I should be
      > doing what?
      >
      > Should I just get the damned things off of Amazon??? LOL :) :) :)
      > (geez, is there nothing you cannot get off of amazon?)

      Yes. I haven't seen geisha advertised there yet, but perhaps I'm not
      looking in the right location ;)

      > Since amazon is better know for books, would there possibly be a
      > recipe book they might carry as well? Something with "traditional" or
      > "folk" japenese foods and the like?

      Others on the list can give you good links to historical recipes, I have
      a fairly modern book I often use;

      http://www.amazon.com/Japanese-Cooking-Simple-Shizuo-Tsuji/dp/0870113992

      I will admit that I haven't tried the chicken sashimi recipe yet.

      > Posted by: "Franzi"
      > As I see it, the debate runs thus:
      >
      > anti-"plum" side: "Plum" conjures up a big, purple fruit in the mind
      > of an English-speaker.

      Growing up near the plum capital of the US, I guess I missed that
      connotation. When I go to the farmers market, sometimes I can't even
      figure out what's a plum unless they label it!

      "Apricot" is still inaccurate, but it's a
      > better translation than "plum", half-baked traditions be damned!

      Part of the problem is that ume that most of us see never one ripened! I
      think they get a ruddy golden when they do. Some of the weird plum
      varieties I've seen are kind of like that as well.

      > Posted by: "Solveig Throndardottir"
      >
      > Greetings from Solveig! The problem with traditional translation is
      > that you are prone to getting the wrong ingredient if you go to the
      > store and try to make stuff from scratch. For example, katsuo
      > (Katsuwonus pelamis) despite anything it says on the packaging is not
      > bonito. It is actually a skipjack.

      I've never lived in an area without Japanese markets so I've not been
      forced to that extreme yet. I have dried fish before, but I'm sure
      there's a trick to get it rock hard like the Japanese manage to do.

      > Posted by: "Solveig Throndardottir"
      >
      > Noble Cousin!
      >
      > 1. The same plant is often classified differently by different
      > botanists.
      > 2. For culinary purposes, there can even be significant difference
      > between different varieties
      > Now that I have shared my sources of information. Please share yours.

      My Canon Wordtank has both as a translation, as well as Shogakukan! The
      freeware JEDICT only has plum, the one I usually 'grab' when I'm on my
      computer. (Might need to update!) Shogakukan uses plum though to
      describe all of the derivatives like umeboshi, etc.

      Enough to confuse anyone.

      My cookbook also has a recipe for umeboshi which mentions as an aside
      that almost every village in Japan has a special recipe for it. I've
      also seen on NHK the farmers that put the bottles over the buds so that
      the ume are grown in the bottle! That's pretty hard core, I suggest a
      mason jar, which is appropriate for this type of liquor ;)

      I'm also sure that you could probably cause a national riot if you made
      a claim that only this one type of umeboshi is the real one. The other
      99.9% would have to hammer you. It would be as bad as some of the ramen
      wars ;)

      Jim Eckman
    • Solveig Throndardottir
      Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... I don t recommend chicken sashimi in North America unless you raise the birds yourself. The problem with North
      Message 2 of 23 , Feb 3, 2007
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        Noble Cousin!

        Greetings from Solveig!
        > I will admit that I haven't tried the chicken sashimi recipe yet.
        I don't recommend chicken sashimi in North America unless you raise
        the birds yourself. The problem with North American chickens these
        days is that they generally have salmonella. This is a comparatively
        recent problem. When I was in elementary school, raw eggs were still
        considered safe. As for plums. We had two plum trees in our back yard
        along with two apple trees and a bunch of berry vines.

        > "Apricot" is still inaccurate, but it's a

        You really have to put Japanese in front as Apricots are a different
        species as well.

        > I've never lived in an area without Japanese markets so I've not been
        > forced to that extreme yet. I have dried fish before, but I'm sure
        > there's a trick to get it rock hard like the Japanese manage to do.

        I ran across a detailed description of how to make katsuo bushi
        several years ago. Unfortunately, I don't recall where it is.
        Regardless, it is a rather involved process. Shaving is the final
        process. Before shaving, the fish looks a lot like a piece of
        wood. I have even seen one of the things hanging under the eves of a
        house.

        > My Canon Wordtank has both as a translation, as well as Shogakukan!
        > The
        > freeware JEDICT only has plum, the one I usually 'grab' when I'm on my
        > computer. (Might need to update!) Shogakukan uses plum though to
        > describe all of the derivatives like umeboshi, etc.

        This is probably a concession to early mislabeling.

        > I'm also sure that you could probably cause a national riot if you
        > made
        > a claim that only this one type of umeboshi is the real one. The other
        > 99.9% would have to hammer you. It would be as bad as some of the
        > ramen
        > wars ;)

        On the other hand, there are several places in Japan which claim to
        be the true home of Momotarou. And, there can be fairly aggressive
        regional advertising for miso.

        Your Humble Servant
        Solveig Throndardottir
        Amateur Scholar
      • chasrmartin
        ... for ... look. Seriously, most any health-food grocery should have them: they re central to Michio Kushi s macrobiotic diet. Failing that, the Amazon
        Message 3 of 23 , Feb 3, 2007
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          --- In sca-jml@yahoogroups.com, James Eckman <ronin_engineer@...> wrote:
          >
          > I'm positive that outside of 3-4 select areas in the US, that asking
          for
          > umeboshi would get you a completely blank look. Asking in anything but
          > an Asian market in those select areas will probably get you a blank
          look.

          Seriously, most any health-food grocery should have them: they're
          central to Michio Kushi's "macrobiotic" diet. Failing that, the
          Amazon ones from Eden Foods are the same brand as the health food
          store ones.

          Or, you could try my local Japanese foods store, which I've just
          discovered has an online operation now. These are *dramatically* less
          expensive.

          http://www.pacificeastwest.com/pipr.html

          I like the Nanki brand.

          >
          > > So if I wanted an AUTHENTIC umeboshi experience, I should be
          > > doing what?
          > >
          > > Should I just get the damned things off of Amazon??? LOL :) :) :)
          > > (geez, is there nothing you cannot get off of amazon?)
          >
          > Yes. I haven't seen geisha advertised there yet, but perhaps I'm not
          > looking in the right location ;)

          The upkeep will kill you anyway.
        • Solveig Throndardottir
          Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... I believe that you are underestimating the availability of Asian grocery stores not to mention the health food stores
          Message 4 of 23 , Feb 4, 2007
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            Noble Cousin!

            Greetings from Solveig!

            >> I'm positive that outside of 3-4 select areas in the US, that
            >> asking for
            >> umeboshi would get you a completely blank look. Asking in anything
            >> but
            >> an Asian market in those select areas will probably get you a blank
            I believe that you are underestimating the availability of Asian
            grocery stores not to mention the health food stores and natural food
            stores already mentioned. Try just about any university town with a
            significant asian foreign student population.

            Your Humble Servant
            Solveig Throndardottir
            Amateur Scholar
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