Nigiri By The Numbers

How much rice does it take to make the perfect pillow for a piece of fish? One sushi chef has an answer as precise as his slicing skills

It’s no secret that sushi chefs pride themselves on precision, and yet we’re endlessly impressed with how well they know their craft. When our dine editor, Lesley Bargar Suter, asked chef Mori Onodera how much rice makes for the perfect piece of nigiri, she assumed he would estimate—turns out the answer is a bit more specific: exactly 247 grains. “I asked chef Onodera what the ideal portion of rice is per piece,” Suter says, “but I didn’t think he’d have an exact figure.”

Well. We should have known considering this is a man who, at one point, grew his own rice for exclusive use in his restaurant. For more tips from this grain guru on how to prepare an unmatched batch of sushi rice, check out this month’s feature on Sushi in L.A.

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