‘Writer baton’ is a project whereby photo-writers from each of the 7 prefectures that surround the Seto Inland Sea send each other their particular prefecture’s specialties.
This time yours truly received a package from Ms. Suganami, our Hiroshima photo-writer.
They’re from Hiroshima! They have plenty of delicious things, don’t they? This is what was going through my head as received a delicacy you just can’t forget when talking about Hiroshima.
Wrapped in somewhat retro packaging is these canned oysters. Boasting the No.1 most shipped in Japan, these Hiroshima oysters have crossed the Seto Inland Sea to my door. I take the cans out of the package, and see that there are three small boxes in three different colors:
-Smoked oil marinated oysters
-Oysters with basil style sauce
The boxes contained an assortment of the above canned goods. The first thing that came into my mind was that they would go amazingly well with sake! Probably not a thought that you would admit to having in the office in the middle of the day though! 😉
However, I felt that it would be a waste to just to go at them like that. I decided to take a look at the advice on the back of the packages and to search online for any recommendations on how to enjoy the oysters. I wonder which one to try first…
I read that they go perfectly with beer and wine, but I resist the urge and start with the marinated oysters.
I open the can and find cute, soft-looking oysters packed within. They are so delicate that it seems they might just crumble away if I tried to scoop one up with a pair of chopsticks.
I place two luxurious pieces on top of a lightly toasted piece of baguette and squeeze on some lemon.
The right amount of sourness goes amazingly well with the bitter, flavor-packed oysters. The oysters were just as delicate as they seemed and were filled with flavor all the way through. They just gently melt in the mouth.
Next off, I matched the oysters with Kagawa-grown mini tomatoes and red turnips, and made them into a salad. I wanted to have the salad with just salt and oil, so I chose the smoked oysters as they seemed they would have a strong flavor.
I open the can. And the first thing that hits the eye is their tan-colored shiny surface. They’re even bigger than the marinated oysters and have the wonderful fragrance of smoked food! I choose them as a luxurious topping for my salad. They’re well smoked, so they won’t fall apart, yet they are not too tough either. What superb oysters. I sprinkle on some grated cheese and salt, and finish with a drizzle of olive oil, a Kagawa specialty. Just by looking you can tell they’re delicious.
It was my first time to try smoked oysters, and I was surprised at how flavor-packed they are. The flavor is much richer than if they were just fried. And they go perfectly with olive oil, too.
Finally, the main dish. Basil and oysters. I already know that they are a great match. With these, too, I go with the advice on the package and decide to cook pasta.
I use the oil from the can to fry some garlic and chili. Next I throw in all the oysters!
How luxurious is this? I add boiled pasta and sliced green onions and give the mixture a quick fry. In that instant my head was just filled with wanting to hurry up and eat, the aroma was so amazing!
I served the pasta in a Kagawa urushi-lacquer dish. After the salad, this is part 2 of the Hiroshima / Kagawa collaboration. Although the oysters are packed with umami and are delicious eaten even straight from the can, I believe that by heating them, they become even more fragrant.
I finish taking photographs and hurry to eat while the dish is still hot! I already knew it would, but everything goes together amazingly well. Although the only seasoning used is the oil from the oysters, it’s just so delicious. Amazing. I keep reaching for more and more. Hiroshima’s oysters are delicious! Just as you would expect.
I finished my oyster filled meal in an instant. The canned oysters brim with an air of luxury, each of the flavors have their own characteristics, and each brings out the deliciousness of the oysters to the fullest. Thanks to Ms. Suganami, I received the full might of Hiroshima’s oysters with all I had!
Next, I will pass the baton to Mr. Fujimoto in Yamaguchi prefecture. It’s all yours, Mr. Fujimoto!
Smoked oil marinated oysters
Oysters with basil style sauce
Available for purchase from link below:
Setouchi Finder Photo-writers:
Text: Tomoko Kawai (Dream Network Activity)
Photographs: Takafumi Yanagizawa (Dream Network Activity)
> Experience the ancient way of salt making on Kamikamagari-jima Island on the Tobishima Kaido in Aki-nada! / Kamagari Ancient Salt Making Remains Restoration Pavilion & “Amabito-no-Moshio” (Kure-shi, Hiroshima)
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