Out of all of the products I discovered at the Summer Fancy Food Show 2012, I am most excited about two in particular. First, Rau Om's Tofu Misozuke is this amazingly creamy cheese-like spread made from tofu. Nothing like this has ever existed in the U.S. market before. It was developed by Oanh Nguyen and Dang Vu who discovered tofu misozuke in Tokyo where it is a rare regional delicacy. They craved it upon return to the U.S., but soon found that the recipe was a secret. They finally found and had translated recipes from an 18th century Japanese manuscript, read PubMed for modern scientific papers, and set up innumerable experiments over the course of two years until they produced that same amazing flavor, texture, and taste known as tofu misozuke. It is produced by aging tofu in miso for two months.
The other product I found is Cavi-Art, a vegan caviar (no, I'm not kidding!) made by Jens Moller in Denmark and imported by Plant-Based Foods in Virginia. Cavi-Art was made by mistake when Jens was trying to show his kids how seaweed could be used to capture enzymes. In the process, he developed a delectable vegan caviar that he offers in many different colors and flavors. This stuff really looks like art.
These two products are not only some of the best tasting products I've had in a while, they are incredibly innovative in that they are each the first of their kind. I used them together to make an incredible appetizer.
Cucumber Tofu Misozuke with Cavi-Art
To start, cut a cucumber on a bias (diagonal).
Then, spread some creamy tofu misozuke on the top. You really don't need much because it is pretty strong. Next, put a spoonful of black Cavi-Art on top of that and top that with a carrot sliver.
The result was pure perfection. Tofu Misozuke has the texture of soft creamy cheese and has a salty miso-flavor while Cavi-Art are little caviar-like beads with a seaweed taste. Together, they paired well with the crunchiness of the cucumber and carrot while complementing each other.
I used the kombu flavor tofu misozuke to make another appetizer with Rick's Picks beets, which I will post soon.
Both of the appetizers (including the one I'll post later) are like taste explosions in your mouth. Serve these at any party and I guarantee people will rave about them!
Tofu Misozuke comes in two flavors and is only sold in Northern California and Oklahoma at the moment for about $7 each. Cavi-Art is sold on Amazon for $10.99 per jar. Please be aware that some of the red colors of Cavi-Art currently use insects for coloring so they are not vegan. All of the other colors are vegan. We are so lucky to be in living in a time when such innovative products are being developed and I, for one, am really excited about these products. These are must-try items -- highly recommended!