Gift Guide 2019: Bottarga, But Better

December 22, 2019

Bottarga (cured mullet roe), was once an obscure ingredient, but lately it seems to be popping up on menus everywhere. I couldn’t be happier: it’s wonderful stuff.

It’s often referred to as “poor man’s caviar” because it is, after all, fish roe. But recently a few caviar producers are making “rich man’s bottarga.” They’re taking pricey sturgeon roe and curing it until it is a solid block that you can grate the as you would bottarga. It’s wonderful simply grated over buttered pasta or omelets (the heat releases the flavor). And sliced into thing little sheets its the perfect addition to this canape season.

I particularly like the Calvisius Lingotto caviar, which is produced in Italy. Aged in oak molds, it comes swathed in gold – a perfectly pre-wrapped present.


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