吾语 IN THE FIRST PLACE

Div­ing Deep Into Din­ing 吃的层次

ZbBZ (Singapore) - - 期精华 IN THIS ISSUE -

It’s three or four in the morn­ing at Tsuk­iji mar­ket in Tokyo and more than a thou­sand tuna, each longer than a man is tall, line the wet floors of the crowded and noisy ware­house, await­ing their turn on the auc­tion block.

Each time I visit Tsuk­iji, which is the world’s largest seafood whole­sale mar­ket, the sight of those mag­nif­i­cent fish never fails to jolt me out of my mid­morn­ing stu­por. Al­though the car­casses are frozen stiff, there re­mains a quiet dig­nity about them, maybe for how beloved they are of chefs and gour­mands world­wide, that hun­dreds of thou­sands of dol­lars are ex­changed for each fish.

By the time the fish are sliced and reach our din­ing ta­bles, we would be pay­ing no small sum for that divine taste of tuna. I have stood in line for five hours at the sushi stalls at Tsuk­iji in sub-zero De­cem­ber tem­per­a­tures for the fresh­est otoro and tuna sushi pos­si­ble — at less than the $50 per piece of otoro sushi I’ve paid out­side of Ja­pan. The real price for my in­dul­gence came later: I caught a whale of a cold from queue­ing in those freez­ing tem­per­a­tures, a cold that took three months to go away.

My l ove for this ir­re­sistible fish has l ed to an in­ter­est i n ev­ery­thing about its habi­tat, the way it is caught, how it is sorted and graded, and how over­fish­ing is pre­vented, be­cause the worst thing that could hap­pen is if we eat it to ex­tinc­tion. As re­spon­si­ble din­ers, we now ex­pect more of our­selves and to know more about the food on our plates. Which is why, when we sit down at good restau­rants and the servers and chefs share in­side in­for­ma­tion about what we will be served, it all height­ens the plea­sure of the din­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. Af­ter all, learn­ing about the food we eat is part and par­cel of el­e­vat­ing a sim­ple meal to an ex­pe­ri­ence that stim­u­lates all the senses.

From the vast oceans to fish­ing meth­ods, whole­sale op­er­a­tions to the din­ner ta­ble, we bring you deep into the world of the tuna in this is­sue of ZbBz. Cer­tainly, I know that I will trea­sure ev­ery bite of the fish even more from now on.

凌 晨三四点的东京,在全球最大的海鲜批发中心筑地市场,上千条 比人还大的金枪鱼冰冷地躺在拥挤和嘈杂热闹的仓库内,等着被 拍卖。

这情况我特地去看过好几次,惺忪睡眼总是被壮观的“鱼尸”震 撼,它们即使僵硬了、冰冷了,仍带不可磨灭的尊严,被全世界的大厨 和老饕崇拜与追求,每年开年上百万元一条的拍卖天价,奠定了 “鱼神”地位。

我曾为了吃一口肥美的O­toro,在12月的筑地市场冒着摄氏 零下几度的严寒,排了五个小时队,换来至少50元一片入口即融 的“肥油”,结果感冒了三个月才痊愈。但我心甘情愿,因为实在抗拒 不了金枪鱼的美味。

我对金枪鱼的一切都感兴趣,它们从哪里来,如何上岸,怎么批 发,如何保鲜,怎样切割,为何美味,哪部分最好吃,是不是有营养, 是否物有所值,这都是我渴望知道的。

我想,这也是很多爱吃金枪鱼或任何美味佳肴的老饕想要知道的, 因为我们对自己的要求越来越高,对所吞下肚的食物有越来越强的求知 欲。当我们在星级餐馆用膳,侍者和大厨对每道佳肴和每种食材解说得 越仔细,无形中就越提升我们吃的层次,将进食从单纯的填饱肚子晋升 为挑逗味蕾的艺术,以及对吃的学习。

从深海、捕捉、批发到上桌,这一期我和大家一样兴奋地潜入金 枪鱼的世界,细看金枪鱼从开始到结束的命运和过程。不认真仔细探讨 一番,还真不知道金枪鱼一生曲折复杂。可以肯定的是,经过这样的探 知,我下一回吃金枪鱼,将更珍惜每一嚼。

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