Uni Monster!

Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 | 0 comments

I'm pretty certain that Wasabi has a genetic predisposition towards alcoholism. Seriously, the only things she's been interested in eating besides her cat food are all substances with some form of alcohol in them (beer isn't really her style, but she's taken a few licks of both wine and whiskey before we could stop her...whiskey was too strong; wine was just right!).
Also, painting my toenails last week turned into an utter disaster after Porklet got a whiff of the polish. Couldn't keep her away from my feet no matter what! She then raced around the room like a rabid rabbit for a few minutes shortly thereafter, which may or may not have been the result of a high from the fumes. She does that anyway sometimes, so I'm guessing (hoping) it was a coincidence!
Tonight was her first taste of 'people' food--besides the wine, at least, and I think that we have truly created a monster. WasaMonster.
Let me try to describe what I was eating, first, though. If you're at all familiar with Japanese food, then this is a breeze, but most Westerners will likely have no idea what I'm talking about. I'll try anyway. First, I took some mochi, which is basically a really hard 'cake' (rock) made of a special sort of sticky rice that's been pounded until any and all identifying characteristics are gone. After this brutal beating, the resulant gooey mass can either be eaten fresh or formed into squares that are then somehow hardened, packaged, and sold to the public. I'm probably simplyfying this process quite a bit, but I really have no idea how they process this stuff and figure it's not all that necessary to know, either.
Anyway, I took a mochi square and popped it into the toaster oven for about 5 minutes, long enough to change it from a rock back to its usual oozing mess, encased inside a slightly hard outer crust. I then took the mochi, laid it on a strip of nori---a type of dried seaweed, think the kind used in making sushi rolls---topped it with a few spoonfuls of bottled uni**, and finally rolled the nori around everything.

**Uni is sea urchin, and the kind I used here comes salted and mixed with some sake in order to preserve it longer.

After rolling the nori around the uni and mochi, it's best to wait a few minutes for the nori to soften, otherwise you'll send flecks of it flying all over when you take your first bite.
And this is where Wasabi enters the picture. I set my snack down near the computer, and the ever-curious little monkey decided to waltz on over and see what it was. She does this to everything I ever eat, and I usually let her sniff at it; otherwise she'll harrass me until she gets her way. I realize that this is probably not exactly sanitary, but then again, I have to admit that I also let her 'kiss' me on the mouth whenever I walk in the door. In my defense, she never sniffs all that long, either.
Moving past my gross habits though, this time Wasabi started to show way more interest in my plate than her average perfunctory 'sniff and move on' act. I grabbed her to keep her away from it, but then couldn't resist offering her a tiny piece of nori. She didn't take the bait, just turned her little specked nose up at it, in fact. Yuki and I both realized that it was the uni at about the same time, maybe because we both know that our cat is a lush. Sure enough, I put a dab of it on my fingertip, and she was in kitty heaven! Cute, but a little scary, especially after she got a bit too overzealous with the licking and took a bite!
Will have to look into AA meetings if this keeps up....

Passed out after a blissful taste of uni