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What Exactly Is Sushi?

So…What Exactly Is Sushi?

Whether or not you’re a fan of Sushi (and honestly, who isn’t?), you may be inclined to believe that it’s simply “raw fish”. But Sushi is a little more than that.

For example, Sashimi is a popular dish made up of raw meat, but specifically in this instance, fish. It’s a common misconception that Sashimi is Sushi. But this is not the case. It is the most popular ingredient in Sushi.

Sushi is a term that refers to foods using a rice seasoned with vinegar. Sure, rolled rice and seaweed have become staples in modern Sushi dishes found in the West, but that’s technically not the traditional dish. It’s not considered Sushi unless vinegared rice is part of the equation.

Different Types Of Sushi?

There is such a wide variety of Sushi that it’s easy to get confused over what is and isn’t.

One form of Sushi, known as Nigiri-zushi, is a hand-pressed mound of rice with a little wasabi and a few other ingredients on top. These other ingredients can include tuna, shrimp, and yellowtail.

Maki-zushi rolls are wrapped using nori seaweed and include choices like tekkamaki (tuna) and kappamaki (cucumber). They are also referred to as Norimaki.

Inari-zushi is a deep-fried pouch of tofu stuffed with brown, oval-shaped, vinegared rice.

Chiarshi-zushi is served on a plate or bowl with various ingredients sitting on a bed of rice.

So yeah, there’s a lot to digest. But there are some key, consistent ingredients/seasonings in Sushi.

For example, soy sauce and wasabi are staples. Soy sauce is used primarily for dipping, while the previously mentioned Nigiri-zushi dish integrates wasabi into the roll. It may also be mixed with soy sauce for dipping purposes. Although, I’m personally not a big fan of the stuff. Too spicy. But pickled ginger is also included alongside Sushi, and THAT I like. It’s great for digestion, too. And Agari (green tea) is a commonly paired drink.

So Where Is The Best Sushi?

Sushi restaurants were once considered “exotic” outside of Japan, but now are about as common as finding a Starbucks.

…maybe a little less, but still.

You can typically find a large number of Sushi places in coastal cities, including Los Angeles and Seattle. But like I said, anywhere you look, you can probably find an eatery.

But make no mistake; Sushi can be expensive depending on where you go. However, there are an abundance of restaurants that offer “half-price Sushi” and “all you can eat”. You get the most bang for your buck there. Just be prepared to unbutton.

I’m sure you’ve seen video footage of a place where Sushi and other food products are sent around a conveyor belt. These places are called Kaiten-zushi, and they are found everywhere in Japan. All you do is wait until the dish you desire approaches, and then simply pick up the plate. If you don’t see a favorite, you can order it from the kitchen. Prices may vary.

So yeah, Sushi is a wonderful thing. ‘Nuff said.