John is gone this week, on the other side of the state with his class of American and Japanese students. They're completing the US component of a study focused on rural communities; next month they'll head to Japan for three weeks of the same. It's an unusual and very cool opportunity. I'm a little jealous because last year I had a really good time in Japan.
But I had my doubts about the choice of seaweed salad.
Raw + Seaweed = Possibly Disgusting?
Possibly Disgusting = A Good Thing To Make When Alone
Turns out I already had all of the ingredients except for the dry-packed scallops, of which I bought 4 at $1.25 apiece. They were labeled a "product of USA" and also "from Japan" which might mean that I'd just bought something caught here, shipped to Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo, purchased by a US buyer, and sent to Oregon. This happens with sashimi-grade fish and I hate to think I might have participated. Arhggg. Perhaps it was a labeling error?
The seaweed was a bit slimy. Anticipating this, I'd bought a couple of spring rolls that could be counted on in case the salad was too weird. And I added waaay more cucumber, because who could argue with that? Despite these attempts at off-setting a bizarre dinner, it was still a tad strange with its sticky kelp and raw scallop.
It was wise to have sacrificed only one of those spendy scallops on the salad.
I sauteed the remaining three in butter and parsley, serving them to myself with garlic bread. Ah, that's more familiar.
The whole dinner was like a culinary analogy to John's class: half Japanese, half American, me easily identifying with the familiar part. Happily, it was all fun.