Looking for whole Katsuo to shave to make dashi
Factory-shaved katsuobushi are easy to find, but is the intact block of dried bonito available in USA?
There's no dashi experience to match the freshly shaved. But even in Japan, most people have opted for the factory shaved flakes, or powdered concentrates.
I'm hoping that it is available on the west coast (SFR, LA). If someone knows of it, could you post contact info?
I've never seen them available in SF Bay Area Japanese stores. I think your best bet would be to have someone one bring one back for you from Japan.
Is there a Mitsuwa anywhere near you? I"ve never seen it at the small Japanese markets in NYC (Katagiri, Sunrise, JAS marts, etc.), but I'd be surprised if the mega-market places don't have it tucked away somewhere, you may have to ask.
Thanks for the replies. I've emailed a request to Mitsuwa, and a few of their suppliers.
In anticiption of having to ask friends in Japan to mail some blocks to me, I checked the US Customs website, now enveloped within Dept Homeland security. Very grim... "No meats" etc.
Yes I've got the box plane (kezuri) for shaving.
We'll see how it goes.
I've found that boiling kombu and shiitake for a good while can create a great dashi...use more kumbu than shiitake and you'll get that fishy flavor...this is also a great vegetarian option.