Japan is among the countries with the largest quantities of fish and seafood consumed by inhabitant per year. Raw fish is one of the main ingredients of the most popular Japanese dish – sushi.

What fish are used for sushi?

Classic Japanese sushi consists of cooked vinegared short-grain rice rolled in sea algae or seaweed sheets, served with vegetables, raw fish, cheese, seafood or e.g. tofu. Successful preparation of sushi requires choosing the right rice, or shari, as well as the right raw fish.

The best selection of fish

What fish should be used for sushi? Which species will be the best when combined with rice and the additions of our choice? Salmon is one of the most popular sushi fish. Nonetheless, it must be emphasised that only ocean salmon (grilled, slightly salted and smoked) can be used for that specific dish. Other options include mackerel, seasoned with vinegar or lemon juice, tuna, with its blood-red meat, and eel, very popular in Japan. The latter (unagi in Japan) is never served raw since eel blood is poisonous for humans. A filleted eel is singed, with fat melting off, and then grilled and seasoned.

Seafood additions

Sushi can be also served with shrimps (ebi), octopuses (tako), crabs, and saba – a fish with intense smell. Sushi is the best with fish of sea origin. Butterfish should be avoided as they may cause gastrointestinal problems and they have no nutritional values.

How to choose the right fish for sushi?

Choosing the right fish for sushi is a guarantee of a good dish as well as our health. So first look for a shop to buy the fish. You have to be sure that the place is trustworthy. Fish should be fresh and the shop reputed. To determine whether the fish meat you have chosen is of good quality, focus on several basic elements. First, examine the eyes, which should be shiny and bulging. The smell of meat cannot be intense, and the gills should be bright red. The meat should be firm to touch. Never pick frozen fish for your sushi.

The best fish for home-made sushi

To prepare sushi resembling the one from Japan as closely as possible, pay attention to the quality of products. The dish should be based on fresh fish from a reputed source – for instance a neighbourhood fishmonger’s shop you know well. Having all the other properly selected ingredients, such as rice and vegetables, you may now compose this delicious dish inspired by Japanese cuisine.

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