My daughter Katie has been trying to coax me to have sushi for a number of years now, but belligerently, and with no good reason, I have declined. So when I was out with my friend of 35 years, Fiona, and I explained this she set upon this as her 50@50 challenge for me.
And this is what I have learnt:-
- Sushi does NOT mean raw fish, but ‘it’s sour’ referring to the rice
- Sushi is a Japanese dish
- the rice used is a special short-grain rice (awake-zu ) and when mixed with rice vinegar, salt and sugar and is known as shari
- nigiri is the sliced raw fish with rice under it
- maki is sushi which is rolled and sliced
- both nigiri and maki are intended to be eaten with your fingers
- sashimi is sliced raw fish which should be eaten with chopsticks
- only the fish elements should be dipped in the soy sauce
- the pickled ginger is intended to be a palate cleanser
Fiona very kindly bought a selection of vegetarian and fish sushi round to my house (a great way to have a first try for the uninitiated) and we had light soy, sweet chilli dipping sauce and wasabi as accompaniments. Well I am sure it is no surprise to you all, that my inability to try new things has meant I have been depriving myself of a real treat.
I grew up with Sunday night teas being winkles, cockles, whelks, prawn and bread and butter….sushi is a posh version of this and I loved it!!! I enjoyed the vegetable and the fish (which bodes well for my 2 week vegetarian challenge), the crunch of vegetables, texture of the rice, full fishy taste and visual beauty…..I enjoyed it all. I also really liked the hit of the pickled ginger….ginger was the find of my 40s…in cakes, stir frys, chocolate and now pickled in sushi….mmmm 😍. However I can not say the same for wasabi, which was like horse radish and mustard and not to my palate at the moment…but I will persevere. So thank you Fiona for a lovely lunch and pushing me out of my comfort zone….next I can have a play on the revolving conveyor belt of yumminess!!!