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EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

Sushi: Low In Calories And Healthy

You can find sushi at that little inexpensive restaurant down the street as well as that elegant 5 star Japanese restaurant. Sushi has become extremely popular and most people are familiar with it. However, few people actually know anything about sushi tradition, how many calories it has and how healthy it is. EAT SMARTER gives you Sushi 101.

Sushi: low in calories and so healthy Sushi: low in calories and so healthy

The best thing first: sushi is low in calories and healthy! The average roll has only around 7 grams of fat per 100 grams. The rice is filling and fresh fish supplies you with lots of protein, healthy fatty acids and valuable minerals.  The seaweed that is often used in sushi consists of 40 percent protein and contains virtually no fat. In fact, the typical Asian seaweed can even promote weight loss. However, some Japanese people have been known to say that we, Americans, don’t even like sushi. This claim comes because we generally add lots of soy sauce, wasabi, ginger and even mayonnaise. Japanese people generally love the taste of simple sushi, so that the entire flavor components can fully unfold; this is something that our American eating habits rarely allow. It’s worth a try though! The next time you are eating sushi, use soy sauce and wasabi sparingly, and eat ginger in between to neutralize your palette. This way you can enjoy the pure taste of sushi.

Sushi: The most popular varieties

Maki: Maki Sushi - a classic. Sushi filled with fish or vegetable, wrapped in rice and then nori seaweed.

Nigiri: Oblong shaped sushi rice coated with a little wasabi covered with fish or a piece of Japanese omelet.

Uramaki (inside-out roll): A version of maki in which the nori seaweed wraps the filling and the rice is the outer shell.

Sashimi: Raw fish cut into thin slices. This is eaten without rice.

Spicy Sushi: Wasabi, Gari, Tsuma

Wasabi, the green horseradish paste, is often included as a condiment to sushi. The light green root is traditionally grated on a small grater until it is a fine pulp and then served with the sushi. In upscale sushi restaurants you should try to refrain from adding too much wasabi or even stirring it into your soy sauce, as this could be seen as an insult to the chef. Gari is ginger cut into thin slices and is often brought out with the sushi. It is used to neutralize your palette between rolls and is generally not eaten directly with the sushi.  Sashimi is not traditionally eaten with the very intense Gari, but is instead combined with Tsuma, or radish that has been cut into very thin slices.

Eating Sushi Properly

Sushi is generally eaten with chopsticks or even with your fingers – a knife and fork is not normally used. The fish side should be dunked into the soy sauce so that way no rice is left in the soy sauce. Traditionally, the bowl is filled with very little soy sauce so that the sauce is all used up when you are done with your sushi. 

Sushi: Practice Creates The Master

Traditionally, the path to become a Japanese sushi chef is long. It takes seven years of training to become a real sushi chef. During this time, students will also partake in gardening, drawing designs on plates and bowls, learning the history of sushi,  perfecting knife skills, learning about rice and much more. The basic training is followed by specialization in a cooking school or a traditional restaurant. Only a handful of student achieve master stars in this traditional training. Fun fact: A sushi master develops his personal rice recipe over many years and keeps it a secret. He or she won’t even share it with students.

EAT SMARTER Sushi Recipes

Here are the best sushi recipes EAT SMARTER has come up with for you plus some more Japanese recipes for all you Asian fans out there. 

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