Sushipedia - Digest - Los Angeles magazine
 
 

Sushipedia

An expert’s guide to terms that will have you sounding like a pro at the sushi bar

Assorted sushi from Kiriko
Photograph by Andrea Bricco

Aburi
A style of searing fish and serving it warm.

Akami
“Red meat.” Fish used in sashimi and sushi that is dark in color; examples are tuna and bonito.

Battera
A type of oshi zushi in which the fish is first placed in the wooden mold, then sushi rice is pressed on top.

Chirashi zushi
“Scattered sushi.” Slices of raw fish and vegetables arranged on a bed of sushi rice and served in a bowl. Also called bara zushi.

Futomaki
Literally translates as “fat roll.” Large, thick cylindrical sushi roll made with multiple fillings.

Gari
Thinly sliced pickled ginger.

Geta
Rectangular wooden blocks used to serve sushi.

Gunkan maki
“Warship roll.” Sushi rice with a strip of nori wrapped around its base to form a vessel, which is then filled with ingredients.

Hikarimono
Translates as “shiny things.” Fish with shiny silver skin; examples are shad, mackerel, sardines, and halfbeaks.

Hōchō
Cutting knife/kitchen knife.

Hosomaki
“Thin roll.” Thin, cylindrical sushi roll wrapped in nori and cut into 6 to 8 bite-size pieces.

Ikejime
Japanese method of swiftly paralyzing and bleeding a live fish to maintain its freshness and quality.

Ikizukuri/Ikezukuri
Preparation of sashimi from live seafood (often used for whole live fish).

Itamae
Sushi chef.

Kaiten zushi
Sushi served on a rotating conveyor belt.

Maki zushi
“Wrapped sushi,” a cylindrical sushi roll.  Fish and/or vegetables with rice are rolled inside nori to form a long cylinder.

Manaita
Wooden cutting board.

Neta (sometimes called tane)
Ingredients that are served as sashimi or sushi (refers to seafood or vegetables) toppings.

Nigiri zushi
“Hand-pressed sushi.” The traditional style of sushi with a slice of fish, meat, or vegetables atop a mound of rice.

Nori
Dried seaweed.

Ocha
Tea.

Odori
Literally translated as “dancing,” the term refers to the eating of live seafood (often shrimp), which continues to move on your plate.

Okonomi
Ordering à la carte, or “as you like.”

Omakase
Chef’s tasting course; literally translates as “trust the chef.”

Oshi zushi
“Pressed sushi,” also called hako zushi (“box sushi”). Sushi rice is  topped with ingredients and pressed into a wooden mold.

Sashimi
Slices of raw fish or meat.

Shari
Sushi rice. Cooked rice mixed with vinegar, sugar, and salt. Also called sushi meshi.

Shime
Means “the end”—the final bite or order.

Shiromi
“White meat.” White-fleshed fish used for sashimi and sushi; examples are sea bream, flounder, halibut, and amberjack.

Shōyu
Soy sauce.

Sushi
Slices of raw fish or meat with rice (shari).

Sushi Shokunin
Master sushi chef, or sushi artisan/craftsman.

Tataki
A style of searing fish, cooling it down, and serving it at room temperature. Also refers to a method of finely chopped fish mixed with condiments like ginger and scallions.

Temaki zushi
“Hand roll.” Fish and/or vegetables with rice rolled inside nori into a cone shape and eaten with the hands.

Temari zushi
“Ball sushi”; sushi in the shape of a ball.

Tsumami
Small bites that are not sushi but are prepared by the sushi chef; includes sashimi and appetizers.

Tsume/Nitsume/Nikiri
Thick, sweet, soy-based sauce made from a seafood reduction and used to brush onto sushi (usually eel and clam).

Uramaki
Inside-out cut rolls with sushi rice as the outer layer.

Wasabi/Sabi
Japanese root vegetable, often called Japanese horseradish, grated onto a piece of shark skin and used as a sushi condiment.

Zuke
Soy-marinated seafood (often tuna).

 

Hidden LA

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