What Does Sushi Taste Like? Interesting Facts You Need To Know
Many food lovers, me included, are always looking for the next interesting meal to try. With the popularity of sushi increasing by the day, many of us keep asking ourselves “What does sushi taste like?”
“How do I know I have eaten great sushi?” is also a common question. After all, how are you even supposed to judge the taste of something you have never tasted in your life? Needless to say, you cannot count on other people’s opinions since everyone’s palate is different.
What Does Sushi Contain Anyway?
You may have been led to believe the common myth that sushi is synonymous with raw fish. I must say that there is no truth to this. A meal with raw fish is known as sashimi and is what most people confuse for sushi.
Sashimi is basically sliced raw fish and is usually served with ginger. Common seafood used for sashimi is tuna, salmon, squid and octopus. In fact, the term sushi refers to vinegared rice combined with other ingredients.
These ingredients may be seafood, meat or vegetables. Common seafood used is tuna, salmon, eel and even tofu. The flavor of the sushi is dependent on the balance of the ingredients. So, for the next time you engage in a conversation about exotic foods, make sure you get your sushi vocabulary right. Moving on.
How Will This Combination Of Ingredients Taste Like?
Since the rice is the main ingredient it must be of good quality and seasoned well to ensure good flavor. While eating sushi, you will taste the sweetness of the rice, the sourness of the seasoned vinegar added and the hotness of the wasabi and it almost brings the heavens on earth! On top of that, you will also get notes of the salty soy sauce.
You have to make sure you don't mix the soy sauce and wasabi so as to ensure you taste both of them without corrupting any of their flavors. Many sushi beginners may be tempted to mix them but it is advised to apply the wasabi to the topping then dipping it lightly in the sauce.
The rice should never get into the sauce because this will also affect the taste of the sushi. Ginger will also be served with the sushi but should not be eaten with the sushi since this will corrupt the taste.
You should take this before and after every sushi meal if you are switching between different sushi types.The ginger helps wash off the taste of sushi from your mouth.
This is important especially if you are trying out different types of sushi. Once you’ve eaten one kind of sushi, it’s advised that you wash off with something neutral before moving to the next sushi. It will ensure the tastes remain distinct for each sushi.
The Different Kinds Of Sushi
The taste of sushi will vary with the type. The common types you may know are:
The ingredients used in this sushi are fish, meat and vegetables. They are rolled into a nori (seaweed).They can also be rolled into an egg omelette. This sushi is highly recommended for beginners, especially the California Roll which is made of crab, sushi rice, cucumber and avocado.
Maki sushi comes in five different roll types; Hosomaki (thin roll), Chumaki (medium roll), Futomaki (thick roll),Uramaki(inside out roll) and Temaki (hand roll).
This is simply hand- pressed sushi. The word nigiri means two fingers and it refers to the portion of rice required. The cook measures a portion fitting in his two fingers before pressing it and topping it with raw fish. Common toppings for this sushi are; octopus, salmon, sardine and tuna.
This is made of a pouch of fried tofu filled with sushi rice. This sushi is suitable for vegetarians since it has no meat. The word Inari means god of the foxes in Japanese Shinto religion.
The god Inari liked tofu thus giving this dish its name. It is no wonder that this sushi is also known as "kitsune sushi "in some parts of Japan (kitsune means fox).
This is known as scattered sushi and involves a bowl of sushi rice with other ingredients scattered all over it. It may or may not contain meat so it can be adapted for both vegetarians and people who eat meat.
There is a version of chirashi called mushizushi which is steamed sushi. It’s served in a bowl or a bamboo steamer. The fish and vegetables are placed over sushi rice and steamed until cooked. This is considered to be a rare type of sushi.
This is basically sushi rice and ingredients made in the shape of a block. The block is made by placing the sushi rice and ingredients in a wooden block called oshibako and pressing them. It is then cut into edible pieces and eaten with chopsticks.
This is made by fermenting rice and raw fish with salt for forty to fifty days then getting rid of the rice. Only the fish is eaten. In some places the rice is also eaten. This was the original way of making sushi. Narezushi is also known as hinesushi.
Try It Out
With all these types of sushi, it is easy to find at least one type that you like! Beginners are encouraged to try out the types without raw fish first before progressing to the ones with cooked fish then finally to sashimi.
Just before you run off.
Check out some of these sushi-making kits. They feature some basic sushi kitchenware as well as the sushi mat. These kits are suitable for home preparation and even beginners in the sushi world. Here we go:
- SushiQuik Sushi Making Kit
- The Sushi Bazooka – All-in-1 Sushi Making Machine
- Sushi Chef - Sushi Making Kit
Finally, like in all matters of life, you will never actually know the beauty of a new experience if you never try it! The only way for you to explore the harmony of flavors that is in sushi you need to get out of your comfort zone and give your palate an amazing experience with good memories that will last a life-time!
So, what kind of sushi have you had? And what was your experience? Or what kind of sushi would you like to try? Please let us know in the comment section below.