Sunday, August 20, 2006

Pasta Sauce Ikasumi Special

I love to try new things from the Japanese grocery in my neighborhood. This week, I picked up some packets of "spaghetti sauce" - my usual favorites being ume (pickled plum) and spicy tobiko (flying fish roe with some chili sauce). I tell you, they are delicious!

This time, I saw a packet called Pasta Sauce Ikasumi on the SPECIALS shelf.

Ok, I thought, I love ika (squid/cuttlefish) so this will probably be good. Lemme read the ingredients:

Corn syrup, tomato, olive oil, cuttlefish, onion, salt, garlic, anchovy, MSG. Sounds good to me! And the photo here looks good - some friendly ingredients... and obviously a little squid ink for color...

I planned to put some tasty tsukemono on top. Pickled garlic with shiso...

Delicious yamagobo (pickled burdock)...

Well, I cooked up some spaghetti and as soon as I squished the sauce packet on there, I got, um... let's say a little apprehensive. Jesus. What is that, tar?

So I mixed it around thinking, ok, it's just a little more squid ink than I was expecting. Ha ha heh! Hmmm.

Ok cool. No biggie. Squid ink's a delicacy, right? And I'm sure it'll taste awesome.

Well, it friggin' did not taste awesome, it tasted like the bottom of a crowded fishbowl that has never been cleaned. Plus salt. And an anchovy aftertaste. And what's worse, they don't call it INK for nothing. That crap dyed my tongue black. I don't even want to know what it did to my insides. If I pee or poo black, I'm gonna have a conniption.

Never mind my Vader guts, look what it did to my pretty Japanese noodle bowl (and ruined a pair of bamboo chopstix)! And this is AFTER WASHING WITH DISH SOAP!

Okay. So. What lessons have I learned for today?

1) When something is on the SALE shelf, in ANY store, no matter how much you like the store, there is probably a reason.

2) Learn how to read Japanese. Because I am quite sure that package says, "Joke Sauce Funnytime! Feed to Gaijin Friends and Make Celebrate Laughter Forever!"

3) If something looks really black and forboding, don't eat it. It's ok to throw it away. It doesn't make you a wuss (yes it does).

Anybody want the other packet? It came with two...