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Today, wild sturgeon fishing is limited and strictly prosecuted. In conditions of artificial reproduction (aquaculture), caviar is represented by the following species: sterlet, beluga, bester, Russian, Siberian and white sturgeon.
According to the method of preparation, it is divided into three groups: pressed, pasteurized and granular. By the type of packing - loose, packaged. The content of table salt in all types of black caviar preparation is 3 - 5%.
In addition, to increase the shelf life, it is allowed to use a preservative (E285 or LIV-1 / LIV-2).
CLASSIFICATION OF BLACK CAVIAR
CLASSIFICATION OF BLACK CAVIAR
Black caviar is one of the most expensive and healthy delicacies. Due to its high cost (from $ 50 per 50 grams), this product has at all times been considered a symbol of prosperity and success, associated with a luxurious, prosperous life. Today, the main place for the extraction of black caviar is the Caspian Sea (90% of the total). The catch is limited in the lower reaches of the Danube, Priamurye, Black Sea region. Aquaculture caviar is obtained in two ways: the usual (fish is caught, killed, gutted) and "non-traumatic" (sturgeon is caught, the belly is ripped open, the yasti are "milked", the cut is sewn up, the animal is released back).
Let's consider what parameters determine the type of black caviar.
BY PROCESSING AND DEGREE OF MATURE
Grainy black caviar
Grainy black caviar
Method of preparation: after catching fish, raw caviar is immediately wiped on a sieve (screen). Thanks to this procedure, the grains are cleaned from the veins of the ovary, films, remain completely clean and whole, and retain their round shape. After punching through a screen, the product is slightly salted until the so-called "tuluz" is formed. Correctly prepared granular black caviar is called dry-friable, in which the grains are easily separated from each other. Underexposed in the ambassador - unacceptable, overexposed - overflowed. To increase the shelf life, antiseptic substances are added to the product - borax and boric acid.
Pajusnaya black caviar
Pajusnaya black caviar
After catching the fish, the caviar is salted right in the ovaries in hot brine, after which it is laid out in splints, dried (weathered). The next stage of preparation is release from the film, cleansing of mucus and veins. At the final stage, dried (fermented) and fresh grains are pressed with pushers in vats, after which they thicken, become flat, and acquire a piquant taste. To transform pressed caviar into a homogeneous mass, it is salted in warm brine, lightly pressed.
Pasteurized black caviar
Pasteurized black caviar
Salted with dry method. Such caviar is packaged in glass jars, which are hermetically sealed and pasteurized. The main purpose of heat treatment is to increase the shelf life of the product. This product can be stored for up to 2 years without losing its nutritional and beneficial properties. Heat treatment gives a richer taste to black caviar, makes the shell of the grains taut.
BY SPECIES OF STURGEON FISH
Ranked first in nutritional value and taste. It is the largest fish in the sturgeon family, reaching up to 4 meters in length and weighing up to 400 kilograms. Caviar accounts for over 25% of the total weight. Interestingly, female beluga females reach sexual maturity at the age of 25 years. The lifespan of an individual is more than 100 years. The fish does not spawn every year. The ovaries are silvery or dark gray in color and have a subtle nutty flavor. Nutritional value: fats - 14.2 grams, proteins - 27.2 grams, calories - 237 calories per 100 grams of product.
Beluga caviar has been a valuable and tasty food product for many centuries. The biochemical composition of black caviar includes a considerable amount of micro- and macroelements, as well as vitamins that have a positive effect on the human body.
Beluga (Huso huso) is a large, carnivorous and freshwater fish, which scientists attribute to the Sturgeon family. Beluga is considered the largest freshwater fish ever to exist on Earth, as well as one of the oldest inhabitants of the waters. The mass of fish often reaches a ton with a length of four meters. For example, once a fisherman's catch was recorded in the form of a beluga weighing 1.5 tons. The fish habitat includes the Black, Azov and Caspian Seas, but the beluga eggs are laid to go to the nearest rivers, most often to the Volga.
At the moment, this species of fish is endangered and is listed in the International Red Book. Beluga is currently bred in artificial reservoirs, since black caviar and its meat are appreciated by true gourmets and are a delicious delicacy. Beluga caviar has not only a wonderful taste, but also a mineral and vitamin composition, as well as other products obtained from sturgeon fish.
Calorie content of beluga caviar
The calorie content of granular beluga caviar is one of the highest, at 237 kcal per 100 grams of product.
Composition of granular beluga caviar
Black caviar is a wonderful gift that nature has presented to man. The chemical composition of beluga caviar is enriched with a large amount of fats and proteins. It should be noted that fats contain important polyunsaturated acids, which provide the human body with a normal life process (calorizator). In turn, proteins saturate the body with amino acids and at the same time are easily absorbed, which also provides a person with good health.
Beluga caviar contains a whole list of useful elements, which certainly include: riboflavin, pyridoxine, folic acid, thiamine, potassium, calcium, sodium, phosphorus, magnesium.
Granular beluga caviar contains a sufficient amount of useful things in order to be recommended even for people in need of active enhanced nutrition.
Black beluga caviar is also rich in vitamins A, B and D.
Useful properties of black beluga caviar
Nutritionists and doctors have found that with regular consumption of beluga caviar, a person's digestion, blood pressure, immune system normalize, and the body is also saturated with essential mineral compounds and vitamins.
How to identify quality beluga caviar
When choosing caviar, it is worth paying attention to the eggs themselves, since it is customary to believe that large, light grains taste much more pleasant than small, sufficiently saturated color (calorizer). As for the advice of true gourmets, they can tell the difference between real and low-quality caviar in just a few moments.
Firstly, if caviar cannot be crushed by pressing the tongue to the palate, then it is either overripe or artificial, since real beluga caviar practically melts on the tongue.
Secondly, the real caviar should roll on the plate from the slightest breath on it.
Beluga caviar in cooking
Beluga caviar is used in cooking similarly to other types of caviar. Most often on holiday tables, beluga caviar can be seen as the main ingredient in tartlets or sandwiches, as well as in the form of a delicious snack. This type of caviar is often used to make original and delicious sauces.
Naturally, it is preferable to use granular caviar in its pure, if I may say so, its original form. It is served in a non-metallic container, and champagne is considered an ideal accompaniment, or vodka chilled before serving.
It is worth noting another interesting fact, black beluga caviar is used in luxury and elite cosmetics that help to rejuvenate the skin and improve hair condition.
Eggs are smaller than beluga, yellowish-brown in color with a sharp shade of sea and algae. The sturgeon can weigh up to 200 kilograms and grow up to 2 meters in length. Often the weight of one adult does not exceed 80 kilograms. Fish grown in warm waters reach sexual maturity at the age of 9 years. Life expectancy is 80 years. 100 grams of product contains 9.7 grams of fat, 28 grams of protein, 203 calories. In terms of cost, sturgeon caviar is inferior to beluga caviar.
The eggs are small, black, more elastic than those of the beluga. This is the smallest sturgeon fish. Its weight does not exceed 25 kilograms, and the body length is 1.5 meters. The female sevruga lays eggs at the age of 8. The calorie content of the product is 221 calories per 100 grams, the fat content is 11.9 grams, and the protein content is 28.4 grams. The weight of caviar accounts for 11% of the mass of fish. It is most delicious in individuals who have reached the age of 20.
WHAT IS THE USE OF BLACK CAVIAR?
The rich chemical composition determines the useful properties of the product:
- supports the immune system, visual acuity;
- normalizes the state of the nervous system and joints;
- enhances sex drive;
- relieves anemia;
- improves mental activity, sugar metabolism;
- removes slags;
- keeps the body in good shape;
- stimulates the work of internal organs;
- neutralizes the harmful effects of free radicals;
- accelerates tissue regeneration;
- strengthens bones;
- improves the condition of patients suffering from coronary heart disease;
- prevents stroke, myocardial infarction, anemia; increases mental capacity;
- gives elasticity to blood vessels;
- activates the production of collagen by the layers of the skin.
Method of obtaining caviar from fish
There are only two such ways. The first one is downhole. This is an old method used to extract caviar back in the days of Ivan the Terrible. The caught fish is slaughtered, and its belly is ripped open to obtain eggs. It was this method, used uncontrollably, that at one time led to the fact that the sturgeon population in the Caspian Sea decreased almost 40 times. Poachers use the same barbaric method. Many fish farms also use the slaughter method.
The living method is considered more humane, the fish remains alive, while it continues to produce eggs about once every two years. With this method, caviar can be extracted in two ways. The first is "milking" or squeezing, when eggs are literally decanted from a live female. The process can take up to 12 hours, since the technology is quite laborious and a lot of time passes from the preparation of the sturgeon to the completion of milking. The caviar obtained in this way is called "milk". The second way to extract caviar is by "cesarean section". The abdominal cavity of the fish is partially opened, the eggs are removed, and then surgical sutures are applied to the abdomen of the female. The fish recover rather quickly and after a while are able to produce eggs again. This method is impractical to use in large industries. In the milking method, caviar is removed at the most optimal stage of maturity, at which it is considered more useful. And in order to preserve high taste qualities, special skill of specialists is required when processing raw materials.
How to distinguish black caviar from a fake?
The sale of black caviar in our country is such a profitable business that some dishonest traders do not hesitate to deceive buyers. Under the guise of black caviar, they offer imitation or even artificial caviar made from seaweed at the price of beluga or sturgeon. For imitation, caviar of pike, cod, capelin or halibut dyed with food dyes is often used. And it’s half the trouble if such caviar is sold at the appropriate price, much worse if the buyer pays for the counterfeit as for real sturgeon caviar, while receiving a product that is far from the quality that he expected.
It is extremely dangerous to buy poaching caviar. In comparison with the products of aquaculture farms, such caviar is an environmentally unfriendly product. The fact is that the sturgeon belongs to bottom fish, it feeds at the very bottom, where industrial waste, toxins and other harmful substances can accumulate. In addition, poachers add harsh preservatives to the caviar, for example, boric acid, violate the transportation conditions and temperature storage conditions. Not so long ago, the Internet was vigorously discussing an outrageous fact: on the Khabarovsk-Komsomolsk-on-Amur highway, traffic police officers found in a hearse ... half a ton of black caviar. And such cases, unfortunately, are not uncommon.
To avoid mistakes when buying, experts recommend evaluating several points.
Caviar appearance. Real sturgeon caviar has a characteristic color and size of eggs. If the caviar is of even black color without shades, it may be artificial caviar. Another sign of artificial caviar is a white coating on the surface.
Pay attention to the density of caviar in the package - when the can is tilted, it should not slide down the walls or lie in a sticky lump.
Taste and smell. Real caviar has practically no fish smell, but has a subtle, subtle aroma of the sea. Only very few people are able to grasp it. If the caviar has a pronounced fishy smell, this is most likely a fake or a sign that the caviar is spoiled. The taste of sturgeon caviar is very delicate, with nutty-creamy notes, sometimes with a slight bitterness. The presence of pronounced bitterness is unacceptable, this may indicate that harmful preservatives have been added to the product, and such caviar should not be eaten at all. An excess of salt is also a bad sign, most likely, such a "delicacy" was prepared in violation of technology or with the expectation of a very long storage.
Manufacturer. A very important parameter.
Container and documents. Legal black caviar is sold in tin and glass jars. Glass containers allow you to immediately visually assess the type of caviar, color, grain size. Checking the quality of caviar in a tin can is a little more difficult, but the method is still a network. Shake the jar - if the caviar "dangles" in it or you get the feeling that there is too much liquid in the jar, it is better not to buy such caviar.
Be sure to pay attention to the composition indicated on the package: it should not contain anything except caviar, salt and preservative ("Varex" or "LIV-1"). Pasteurized caviar contains nothing at all except salt and caviar. Vegetable oil and any other additives (borax, sodium benzoate) are a sign of counterfeit or poor quality products.
You should also pay attention to the relevant documentation. Conscientious manufacturers always provide a declaration of conformity for the product, it can be required at any point of sale. The documents must indicate that the caviar is legally produced in an aquaculture farm and has a CITES permit.
Point of implementation. You need to buy black caviar only in trusted stores. It is available for sale in almost all major retail chains. But the goods at a low price from private traders are almost certainly poaching caviar, obtained by the barbaric slaughter method and salted in violation of all conceivable norms. In addition, the purchase of illegally obtained caviar is a direct support for the poaching industry.
Black caviar price
Black caviar price. Real sturgeon caviar cannot be cheap. Its production is a very costly and laborious process. The sturgeon grows very slowly, and it is necessary to make a lot of efforts to raise a healthy mature individual before obtaining eggs. Cheap black caviar is almost certainly a fake or illegally obtained product.
How is black caviar eaten?
How is black caviar eaten?
The chefs emphasize that the status of the product requires special treatment, and recommend adhering to the classic ritual: put a jar of caviar on ice, wait 20 minutes. This will fully reveal the taste of the treat. Place the treat between your index finger and thumb on the back of your hand. It is generally accepted that this product should be eaten with the peel. So you will feel the tart oiliness, the consonance of subtle aroma and taste. If this option is not to your liking, the treat is consumed exclusively with table silver. Metal spoons change the taste of the product for the worse.
Wash down with champagne.
Black caviar goes well with oysters, egg white, hard cheese, cream sauces, puff pastry, lemon, pancakes. The delicacy cannot be combined with fruits, pastries.
- The largest purchase of black caviar in history belongs to singer George Benson, who bought 3 tons of the gourmet product for $ 3 million on his 50th birthday.
- Black caviar is a powerful aphrodisiac. It contains a record amount of mineral compounds and vitamins that accelerate recovery, regulate metabolism, and increase sexual performance.
- One day, Charlie Chaplin was paid 4 kilograms of caviar as a royalties for a film.
- Children of women who consumed caviar at least 2 times a week 2 months before conceiving a child and during the period suffered from rickets less often, and were less sick.
- The most expensive caviar in the world is the beluga "Almas". The color of the seeds is white, the cost per kilogram is $ 23,000. It is obtained from fish that are over 100 years old. The Iranian company "House Almas" packs caviar into cans made of pure gold. It is believed that the consistency and taste of the product depends on the age of the beluga. The older the fish, the more tender the caviar.
- Representatives of peoples who often eat have a longer life.
- It is a product of youth. Nutrients that make up "black gold" slow down aging, skin flabbiness, and activate collagen production. Therefore, this product is often used in cosmetology to inhibit the processes that cause dermis fading. The anti-aging mask contains black caviar (10 grams), egg yolk (one), aloe juice (20 milliliters). These components enhance each other's action, have an anti-inflammatory, anti-aging effect.
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Red caviar without preservatives consists only of caviar and salt. The shelf life of such a product is rather short, so it is not available to everyone. ... A prerequisite for proper storage of red caviar is tightness and cold. If these conditions are met, then the container can be any (tin, glass, plastic), which excludes the penetration of air into the packaged product.
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