|The gourmets are sure that the main advantage of eggs is that one
doesn't need to know much about them. But with caviar, the story is
In Persian the word "caviar" means "bear eggs". It comes from
sturgeon, a mysterious fresh-water fish, which originates from the
stone age. Out of 27 kinds of sturgeon fish, only three are really
valued for their caviar:
Beluga is the largest of sturgeon fishes, and its caviar is also the
largest. Beluga can weigh as much as 2,000 pounds and live as long as
100 years. The most rare and expensive beluga's caviar is appreciated
for the size and buttery taste of the caviar grains.
Sturgeon, whose caviar is a little less in size than beluga's.
Sevruga (stellate sturgeon), fish of smaller size with smaller size of
eggs, with a distinctive sea taste. This caviar is the most available
and most respected by experts. Fortunately, it is almost 60% cheaper
than beluga's caviar.
Where does it come from?
Red caviar is obtained from the roe of salmon fishes, processed with a
saline solution with subsequent addition of preservatives. It is worth
Caviar of pink salmon is the most common kind of caviar. It has
middle-sized silken round grains of light orange colour.
Trout caviar has middle-sized firm grains, red in colour. Usually it
is a little sticky and quite salty, that is why it is often used in
recipes together with milk products: cream, cheese or sour cream.
Caviar of keta (dog salmon) is considered to be of the highest quality
and taste of all kinds of salmon caviar. The grains are large, their
colour is closer to red than to orange but it is not as dark as the
caviar of red salmon, coho salmon or trout.
Caviar of red salmon, the most valuable kind of Far East salmon
fishes, is valued for its distinctive piquant flavour, tender grains
and bright colour.
Caviar of coho salmon is distinguished by its bright red colour,
grains are smaller than keta's.
The colour of grains depends on the age of the fish, time of
collection and other time factors.
Advantages of red caviar
Red caviar has its advantages, which allow it to take its deserved
place among delicacies:
First, though it is cheaper than black one, it is not any less
valuable in its taste and nutrition qualities.
Second, while black caviar was popular mostly in the South of Russia,
the red one was favoured in Siberia and in the Far East. And lately
this delicacy started to acquire more and more fans in Europe.
Third, unlike sturgeon caviar, which has been prepared in several ways
(yastik, dried, sun-dried, pressed or fresh-grained), red caviar has
always been fresh-grained.
The benefits of caviar
First, caviar has a lot of proteins - about 30% of proteins,
practically all of which are digested by the body (it is very rare for
Second, caviar contains a lot of valuable amino-acids, minerals, A, C
and D vitamins and folic acid. This is why caviar is often prescribed
to pregnant women.
How to eat it?
One's relationship with caviar, the most romantic food in the world,
follow the scenario of any love story. First goes flirt (tiny caviar
grains for an appetizer before a meal), then - temptation (for
example, French tarama, a creamy caviar paste spread over blini), and,
finally, the pleasure itself (caviar by spoons or on a light brown
toast with butter).
Normally caviar is served on a glass dish placed into a silver or
nickel silver vase with ice cubes.
At special ceremonies caviar is served in ice vases made by freezing
water in special templates.
Caviar is supposed to be served with toasts. Caviar is put on the
toast with a spatula or a spoon and then the toast can be eaten by
Most often caviar - fresh-grained or pressed - is eaten with butter.
This is why they are usually put on the plate together. While holding
a piece of bread in the left hand, one takes a knife in his right
hand, puts some butter on the bread with the knife and then puts
caviar on the butter. This little sandwich is directed to the mouth
with the left hand.
Also caviar can be eaten the following way: a slice of bread (or a
half of it) is put on a plate near caviar and butter. One makes a
sandwich while holding the bread with the finger and the thumb, then
cuts little pieces off it, pins them with a fork and directs into the
Many people judge caviar too frivolously. They eat tiny portions of
caviar with crackers, eggs and onions and claim it is not that
important what to eat it with. These statements remind of judging
cigars by the impressions of the smoke of these cigars.
Experts state that caviar must be eaten with little spoons and without
bread, because bread spoils the taste of caviar.
The most common serving of caviar is on sandwiches and canape with
butter or on lightly brown toasts.
Traditional Russian blini (pancakes) with caviar are famous.
Ikryaniki, or caviar pancakes, were popular in Russia at the time of
Also caviar is used as a cold appetizer or a side dish for smoked
salmon, or as a garnish for salads.
What to eat it with?
Or, better: "What drinks to serve it with?"
Nobody will oppose vodka.
Champagne? Only as an expensive elite drink.
To tell the truth, only real brut from the province of Champagne goes
with caviar. Any other kind interferes with its taste.
And to create a romantic mood white Chardonnay and dry wine will be
the best choice.