Every once in a while Reiko, my mother in law, travels to Japan on business and pleasure. When she returns Aki and I are the recipients of many interesting Japanese exports, from candied nuts wrapped in nori to dried cuttlefish and squid. Reiko hand picks interesting ingredients and snacks and then bundles them up and ships them to us. Inevitably, we have little or no idea what all the packages are so we have a verbal show and tell over the phone as we are led through the ingredients, their significance and reason for being included in the care package. Recently, Reiko sent dried cuttlefish which is like a sweet sea jerky. At first the taste turns your head, though like many Japanese snacks the taste, texture and aroma become addicting. At first I wanted to make a puree out of the dried cuttlefish. Unfortunately Aki and Inky finished the package off before I spoke up.
When I talked with Reiko she said she would send some more dried cuttlefish or squid. She was true to her word and in her latest package arrived a package of what I believe is dried squid. It is not as thick or sweet as the cuttlefish, though I could be wrong for I cannot read or speak Japanese.
I took the dried squid and rethought my idea about a puree. I wanted something crispy. So, I made a dried squid crisp. I plan on using the crisp in an asparagus salad, though I shall see what inspirations come between now and then.