Category Archives: Frutti De Mare Dinner

Ching-I’s Frutti de Mare Dinner

I might just be really getting into documenting food preparation and presentation. We were fortunate enough to be invited to partake of and prepare a meal to celebrate friendship and the coming year. Thank you to Ching-i for the very special evening. Only you can pull something like this off.
Please check out the preparation photos for each dish!
“Italian Sushi” – Rigatoni stuffed with uni, seeweed, panko and soy sauce.

Fresh shucked Kusshi oysters.

Grilled scallops, dashi, ponzu, sesame.

Grilled eggplant with ginger, mustard leaves, sprouts, anchovies and greens with onion sesame dressing.

Steamed snow crab.

Fresh sea urchin (uni) from Maine and California.

Documenter, sous chefs and chefs.

A tribute to Cheateau Montelena is here.

Style elements are here.

The evening’s spirits are here.

A Tribute to Chateau Montelena

It was great to finally open a bottle we saved from a Napa trip in 2006. The 2003 Chardonnay by Chateau Montelena was the perfect pair to our seafood dinner. It was crisp, smooth and celebratory. Cheers!
Took some photos to commemorate the bottle:
In a tub of ice with the remains of a California urchin.

Posing with the shell of a Maine urchin.

The evening’s spirits.
Happy 2012!

Style Elements: Ching-i’s Place

Style Elements is a special section where I feature photos I take of objects that capture my eye in people’s homes or in public spaces. 

Style Elements at Ching-i’s Frutti de Mare Dinner

Yes, a Japanese cookbook.

Let’s start with some good luck.

And an army of well-wishers.

A santa bucket of oysters.

Some straggler scallop stowaways.

I must conclude that creative chefs drink good coffee.

A cute planter and an outgrown vice.



Just mousing around.

A guard cat.

Excuse me. Ligne Roset dining set.

Can’t have too much luck.


The demographic is obvious.
Bonus points if you can tell which one is mine.

Kinokuniya means you killed my grandfather. đŸ˜‰

Never underestimate the power of tea.

Well excuse me! Villeroy & Boch!
Better not drop that shit.

A tribute to Chateau Montelena is here.
Definitely a lot of luck in this house.
Mine. All mine.
The evening winds down with citrus,
pretty things,
and tea.
Is this goodbye?

No, just a new year. :o) 
Happy 2012 to all!

Maine and California Sea Urchins (How To Prepare Sea Urchins for Uni)

A Maine urchin.


A California urchin.

How to open a sea urchin for uni.

Hidden treasure.

Opening the California urchin.

Scoop out the roe with a spoon.

Wash and remove innards, rinse.

Remove black stuff.

Soak in a bowl, drain and return to shell.

For the occassion, a 2003 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay from a Sonoma trip in 2006.

California uni (urchin roe) have a deeper, richer flavor.

But no complaints on the Maine uni, a cool, unique taste that is full of ocean life.
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