Uni: Ye or Nah?
We’ve all had our fair share of experiences with food that looks terrible, but turns out to be pretty good, amirite? Escargot anyone? Well today I’ll be talking about something along the same vein: Uni, which is the Japanese word for sea urchin (or, more specifically, its gonads). The simple sashimi not only features on typical Japanese menus, but is now also trending on your news feeds. From uni sandwiches to uni pasta: Uni errywhere. It has gained cult status in the culinary world, which thus explains its high demand and high cost. This is probably why it’s missing from the Lahore food scene. Yup folks, uni isn’t available in Lahore. So if you do plan to eat it, you’ll have to skip town. Preferably country.
Its appearance might make you feel a little queasy, and opinions on Uni are divisive. So yeah, it’s quite the controversy. Uni enthusiasts enjoy the ‘smooth, creamy texture’ and compare its taste to the ocean. Um, what does the ocean even taste like, dude? Salt? It is also considered to be an aphrodisiac, believe it or not (wipe that smirk off your face, you dirty dog). Hey, I don’t make this stuff. I just report on it.
Uni happens to be a seasonal food and is typically served between fall and winter. It is best during December, as per Japanese standards. So if you’re looking to try some, tis’ the season. When ordering you gotta make sure it’s cooked to perfection, ‘cause that’s what really matters when you’re dining uni-style. Renowned chefs from around the world recommend it be cooked firm and dry, not mushy or slimey. I’m definitely with them. I don’t want anything that’s mushy or slimey (unless it’s jelly ofcs). Ew. Sounds like an acquired taste.
Now I like sushi/seafood just as much as the next person (lmao I love sushi), but this is something I’d definitely be skeptical about eating. Typically I would’ve been like “nah man, I ain’t eatin that shit”. C’mon it looks like a yellow tongue (and a little like mango ice cream, on a good day) Yuck. But I promised myself that I’d be a bit more bold with my food choices. Everyone’s saying it’s delicious, unique, exquisite yada yada yada. So, it can’t be all bad? *gulp*
I’ll try it if you do.
Too bad it ain’t available here. Sigh. If I’ve left you mouthwatering with the mood for some uni, you’re gonna need that New York state of mind. Three pretty well known uni serving restaurants would be the El Quinto Pino tapas bar, Hasaki, and New York’s All’onda. Give em a visit when you’re in the Big Apple.
Then again it is JUST a trend. Remember cronuts? Let’s see how long this lasts.