The History of Sushi - Pure, Beautiful, Plumb and Chewy

Historicalfacts.net: The History of Sushi - Pure and beautiful, plumb and chewy, sushi's in it's own world of tempting clean and fresh flavors. Sushi can be over the top chic at times, but it started out with much humbler roots. Sushi is over 2000 years old and started out in Japan. It started out as a process used to preserve fish by pressing the fish in a salt and rice mixture. The earliest known type of sushi was called "Nare-Zushi" or preserved carp. It was stored for months that way then opened and eaten without the rice. It is still eaten this way in some parts of Southeast Asia.

The History of Sushi

Around the fifteenth or sixteenth century the process was shortened creating the "Nama-Nare-Zushi" or partially fermented sushi. In this form the rice was eaten with the fish. It wasn't until much later, around the seventeenth century, when the Japanese started adding vinegar to cooked rice to get the trademark tangy rice taste of today. They called this "Haya-Zushi"or instant vinegared sushi rice.

By the eighteenth century "Maki-Zushi" or rolled sushi, began to appear. When the early nineteenth century rolled around (a little sushi humor there) "Nigiri-Zushi" or finger sushi, came into popularity as sushi stalls started popping up all over Japan. Sort of the first Fast Food sushi, people could eat these little bite sized rolls on the go.
The History of Sushi
The History of Sushi - Pure, Beautiful, Plumb and Chewy

The greatest moment in sushi history occurred in 1824 when a Tokyo sushi stall vendor named Hanaya Yohei made a finger sushi topped with a slice of raw fish. Word spread quickly and now we have sushi in it's current form. Raw fish and vinegared rice, what a delectable combination.

The History of Sushi - Zake Sushi

Coming across the name Zake Sushi floods a person's mind with Japanese dishes. The name Zake sounds like Sake which refers to Japanese alcoholic beverage. In western countries, Sake is mostly called rice wine. In wines, alcohol is produced through fermentation process. Natural sugar present in fruits is used for alcoholic fermentation. Sake is not processed through fermentation method, instead brewing method is used. Brewing is commonly used in beer making. It is more appropriate to call Sake as rice beer rather than rice wine.

Rice wine is not only used as beverage but also as a flavor enhancer in cooking protein and vegetable viands. On the other hand, Sushi is a popular Japanese dish not just in Asian countries but across the globe. Sushi is simply made of small portions of rice, fish, and either fruit or vegetable rolled with nori.

If you are in the mood for Japanese wine and chunks of sushi, dining in a Zake Sushi restaurant can satisfy your craving for Japanese food. In Southeast Asia fish and meat are treated with fermentation process. Meat and fish are salted and aged for long periods of time for the purpose of food preservation. This same method of extending the shelf-life of fish and meat is similar to records found in Chinese scriptures during the second century. The first sushi discovered is nare-zushi where cleaned fish is kept with uncooked rice to hasten fermentation.

Rice is discarded and only preserved fish is consumed at the end of the process. Sushi was first introduced to China and later on to Japan in the Heian period. The birth of seisei-zushi and namanare emerged. These types of Sushi concocted by the Japanese are products of their preference for eating cooked rice and preserved meat or fish together. Sushi then became accepted as a cuisine rather than a fish preservation technique.

Many restaurants and mobile food stalls in Tokyo, Japan started serving haya-zushi in the early 1800's. Haya-zushi is made in such a way that both rice and fish can be consumed at the same time and rice is no longer a preserving agent for fish. This type of sushi remained popular even today. Restaurants all over the world serving Japanese cuisine just like Zake Sushi lounge have a variety of sushi by mixing different vegetables, fruits and seasonings.

Sushi during earlier years is traditionally eaten using chopsticks. Most food shops like Zake Sushi serve sushi in a small plate with chopsticks as serving accompaniment. Special sauces are served in separate dishes. There are three famous restaurants in Tokyo, Japan which is formerly known as Edo. These restaurants are Matsunozushi, Kenukizushi and Yoheizushi. However, more restaurants came and became established.

Flavor infusion in sushi eventually took place and more sushi shops like Zake Sushi are launched. Marination is now being associated in sushi. Fish is marinated in soy sauce or in a sour sauce like vinegar and seasoned with salt. Partial cooking of fish meat is also being done to impart more flavors to the dish. When refrigeration was invented, chilled raw fish is used as filling for sushi. Evolution of a wide range of sushi dishes continued all over the world.

The Facts About Sushi

Sushi is enjoying immense popularity in the United States and other countries in the west, and all over Asia, as well. Although it is frequently thought to originate in Japan, sushi was actually first found in China.

The sushi that is popular today differs dramatically from its original form. Sushi once consisted of servings of fish that had been fermented. The fermented fish was prepared with rice in seventh-century China. Methods to keep fish from spoiling had not been discovered at the time. Fresh fish fillets were cured between sheets of salt under pressure for a number months to preserve them. The fish was then rolled into rice that had been immersed in vinegar for some time. This was done to promote the fermentation of the fish, so that it would cure more quickly. The rice was discarded, and the fish was served as sushi by itself.

The Japanese eventually discovered sushi. They took the original food and created many different varieties of the dish. It wasn't until the seventeenth century that Hanaya Yohei created the sushi that we are familiar with today. As a chef, Hanaya entertained the idea that people might have an interest in sushi in an unfermented state. It caught on immediately and became very popular, becoming the Japanese equivalent of fast food.

This more modern concept of sushi became popular throughout Asia, and a lot of ethnic variations of the dish began to appear. Fermentation of the fish and rice became popular over time, and the fermentation step that had taken years was eventually improved so that it was a lot shorter. The fish was then stuffed with cooked rice in order to preserve it.

Seaweed, or nori, was eventually introduced as sushi became more widespread, and its popularity grew. In addition to the raw fish, fish that had been pickled was offered for the first time. In order to eliminate the lengthy rice fermentation step, rice vinegar was employed. Because of this, it now took just one day to prepare sushi. Initially a basic fast food item, it didn't take long for sushi to develop into a form of art in Japan. The Japanese presentation of the dish also evolved into an artistic expression.

The History of Sushi - Pure, Beautiful, Plumb and Chewy