What is Caviar?

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 different.  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 noting.  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.

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