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I’m Mari.
On Marivelous Me! you’ll find recipes, food gifts, food I’ve traveled for and food solutions. Poke around, maybe you’ll find inspiration for something you’re working on. Enjoy! 


Entries in seafood (5)


Cooking with Mom: "Chestnut" Shrimp Balls & "Pine Needle" Soba

Japanese food, like many other countries is very seasonally driven but the Japanese try and take it one step further. Sometimes they make foods as proxy for the real thing. Huh? A couple weeks ago, Mr. Mari and I went to my parents' home. As an appetizer, my Mom made us some fried shrimp balls that had bits of broken somen noodles on the outside of them. Yum! I thought - I love crunchy. I should have known better than to think it was just a textural thing since we are talking about my Mom and it was an autumn weekend. What she actually made was shrimp balls that symbolized chestnuts, an Autumn-specific food. In the wild, chestnuts have prickly outsides; those smooth nuts we normally see in markets are what're inside the burr.  

To further emphasize the Autumnal motif, Mom made some "pine needles" too - made of fried soba and seaweed. Obviously, they aren't just for decoration. Follow the jump to read the allegory - because of course it's something more than just being edible pine needles!

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cooking with mom: lobster sashimi

lobster sashimiOne weekend when Mr. Mari and I were at my parents' home, my Mom clapped her hands together and said, "Okay. Tonight, cooking lesson!" I thought it was going to be something like chicken teriyaki or beef tataki. Oh boy was I wrong. I heard the garage door shut and she comes towards me with a plastic bag held high and swinging: "We're making lobster sashimi." Whoa. My Mom had read on my blog that I had never made it. Not wanting to deprive me of this experience, she went and got us a couple lobsters. 

lobster sashimi grossed outFYI - The following images might be a little gross for some, so if you don't have a strong constitution, I suggest coming back tomorrow for a less ooky post. That said, it's actually not as bad as you may think. It's almost no different from eating a boiled lobster, but I thought I should put up a warning - especially for those that have others prepare their lobsters for them.

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cooking with zak & max: boiled lobster 

Our friends, Sandy and Bob, generously invite us out to the beach every summer. To kick off the weekend with them, we bring live lobsters for dinner. I know, it sounds totally anathematic to bring lobster from Manhattan to the eastern tip of Long Island but we get our lobster from the Red Hook Lobster Pound. 'Nuff said.

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shrimp, cockle and sausage boil

Mr. Mari didn't grow up eating much in the way of seafood. His exposure was limited to fried fish sticks, shrimp cocktail and on rare occasions, he'd order Dover sole at fahncy restaurants. It wasn't until ten years ago when we went to Japan on a twelve-day trip with my parents that his appetite for seafood changed. Since they were hosting, Mr. Mari said he'd eat whatever was placed in front of him. If he didn't like it, he'd still eat it - but chase it down with lots of sake. There were some strange things, even things my dad didn't like, but Mr. Mari ate everything - raw, baked, boiled and fried. 

We eat seafood about 1-3 times a week now, mainly because it's a healthy source of lean protein. I thank my parents for taking us on the trip that pried Mr. Mari's palette open but I'm also thankful for selfish reasons. I love shellfish and if I could eat it every day - raw, baked, boiled or fried - I would. No sake chaser necessary.

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scrod with wilted beet greens

A few months ago, we tried a "lifestyle program" called Physique57. Those that were on the two-week exercise and food regimen supposedly lost inches and pounds - sounds good to me! Well, I lost neither. For ten days, I cooked all the recipes, did the exercises but didn't feel any lighter or leaner. It turns out, each day’s menu totaled 1500 calories. I must have been eating that many calories beforehand. What this program did teach me though is how much oil/fat I didn't need to add to food for it to taste good. I started adding more herbs, "concentrates" like caramelized onions and pop! like lemon juice or vinegar to dishes for sparkle instead of richness.

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