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Caviar from the Caspian Sea used to be the benchmark against which all other caviar was judged, but nowadays it's illegal stateside. Instead, look for farmed caviar with snappy (never mushy), larger-sized eggs, and make sure to enjoy it within eight weeks of purchase. Additionally, if you're splurging on this luxury ingredient, consider serving it plain on nonreactive spoons so as to better appreciate its nuanced flavor.

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