Many people have never had the opportunity to taste the caviar. I admit that before I had a cooking blog I had only tried it once, brought back from the former USSR by an uncle who was on a business trip at the time. I was only a teenager but I keep alive the memory of these sturgeon eggs, even if in terms of taste, I did not find it transcendent at the time. It was so exceptional (considering the price) that the moment had become extraordinary. The proof, 30 years later I still remember it.
So finally, why not offer a first encounter with caviar to friends (not a dozen of course unless you’ve won the lottery) and thus create a rare taste and friendly souvenir? You can please 4 people for 60 € for example (for a Sturia Classic Caviar). I think it’s a very very nice gift. Sometimes this price is put in a bottle of wine, in a few books, in a perfume. Why not try a small box of caviar?
Yes, but how to choose caviar? Between the brands I can’t find my way around. I don’t know anything about it and given the price I wouldn’t want to miss it.
How I understand you!
Its quality is defined by its size, color, mouthfeel, taste and maturation. To have visited 3 producers in Aquitaine in the last few years, I will go to a French caviar or a famous brand and avoid all low-cost caviar.
Then it’s up to you. What I liked about the range of Sturia products that I had the chance to visit at the beginning of this summer is that several “tastes” are proposed according to very precise selections (see my article Sturia, le caviar Haute Couture). All of them contain 4% salt but depending on the maturation (aging) of the product, you have big differences.
But what difference does aging make, you ask?
The aging, the refining, is the evolution of the taste thanks to the salt. The latter, over the weeks will pass from the outside of the egg (salt just on the surface) to the inside of the egg. And I can tell you that this completely changes the taste, it has nothing to do with it:
- At first, for a early caviar (less than one month of aging), the salt will be just on the surface. We find hazelnut aromas, a hint of bitterness (fresh hazelnut skin) and it has little or no aromatic persistence.
- If you go to a slightly older caviar, At 3 to 4 months, for example, the salt will have pierced the outer membrane and progressed inside the egg. You get a sensation of salt, hazelnuts and iodine.
- And finally, for a caviar that is more than 8 months oldThe salt will be on the outside, inside and even in the heart of the egg. The complexity in the mouth is much greater and it feels saltier but not at all.
For someone new to caviar, I find the middle age interesting. The youngest one, I find it lacks a bit of character, but it’s very personal.
And the size? What difference does it make ?
A bigger egg (3 mm for example) will give in mouth something more greedy, which covers more. It is a little difficult to explain. It is more a sensation.
Once you have chosen, you may ask yourself the following questions:
How to store caviar
In the refrigerator, in the coldest part.
How to serve caviar
On a bed of crushed ice, it is ideal.
Do not leave it on a table at room temperature when tasting. It will take a very unpleasant fishy taste.
How to eat caviar
Nature with a small spoon (in plastic that does it very well or in mother-of-pearl, one avoids the stainless steel or aluminium cutlery), or then in all that is creamy. To begin, I will really advise you simple things, which do not hide the taste, but enhance it. Put a little bit of it on fresh cream, with burrata, with some scrambled eggs or on a slice of steamed potatoes. By clicking here you will discover all my recipes with caviar.
To go further :
A bonus I love this American kids vs food series. Children discover and taste food and with all their spontaneity give their opinion.