Sushi History - Fusion Kitchen Sushi Bar - Chinese Restaurant in Taunton
Origin of Sushi
The earliest sushi-making methods probably came to Japan from Southeast Asia or China, at about the time that the Japanese were learning to grow rice.
As early as 500 B.C., the mountain people in Thailand, Laos and North Borneo used river fish and rice in pickling and fermenting processes that preserved the fish. A similar fermenting process was used in China in early times, but through the reign of Mongolia over China (1368~1644) the process was lost, perhaps Mongolians did not eat seafood.
In Japan, sushi was seen originally as a way of preserving fish. Layers of carp and layers of rice were placed in a jar with a lid on top and left to ferment for up to a year. The fish would be eaten and the rice thrown away. As time went by, methods of fermentation were developed that took only a few days, so the rice, which had a sharp, sweet taste, could be eaten as well as the fish. In Shiga Prefecture of Japan today, the traditional fermentation process for carp and rice, known as “Nare-zushi”, is still used.
Several centuries ago, the people of Tokyo (or Edo as it was then called) were known for their businesslike impatience. In the 1640s, they came up with the idea of adding vinegar to the rice to give it a fermented flavor without the bother of having to wait a few days for fermentation to take place.
In early sushi making, the fish was either marinated, boiled in soy and Mirin (concentrated sweet rice wine), or grilled. In time, the range expanded to include raw fish-sashimi. In the early 1800s, a man called Yohei Hanaya began serving sashimi on sushi rice at his street stall, or it is called “Yattai”, in Tokyo, which marks the beginning of the current style of Nigiri-Zushi. During the winter season, he brought his fish to his stall in an icebox, which he would then open to show his customers the day’s selection.
This Yattai stall was a wagon with a counter, and it had a curtain. Until early last century, the most popular sushi stalls were those that had the dirtiest curtains: A dirty curtain meant a busy shop, and therefore a good one. Customers would eat their sushi, dip their fingers in their tea and then wipe their hands on the curtain to dry them. Sushi Bar tea cups are large, so they double as finger bowls. Since the 1950s, sushi has moved indoors to more western-style, seated establishments. Even though they no longer serve sushi, you can still visit Yattai stalls for cheap, outdoor, informal meals in some parts of Japan.
Oshi-zushi is the style of sushi making that evolved in Osaka. To make Oshi-zushi, fresh seafood or other ingredients are placed in a custom-made wooden box, sushi rice is added, and then a lid is put on to press the sushi together to form a cube. The cube is cut into bite-sized pieces for serving.
As a result of both geography and history, there are many regional differences in Japanese cuisine. Broadly speaking, food prepared in the Kanto region, which includes Tokyo and Yokohama, differs from the Kansai style of Osaka, Kyoto and thereabouts. Kansai style cooking is seen as “haute cuisine”, with subtle flavors, whereas Kanto flavors tend to be stronger, using stronger miso and more soy sauce. Chefs will generally have a preference for one or the other style.
By Chef Ryuichi Yoshii, “Sushi” in the Essential Kitchen Series
Top Advanced Level Sushi - Chinese Restaurant at Downton Taunton
Our Sushi and Chinese Restaurant Located at Downtown Taunton of Massachusetts , In The Bristol County Area Included Norton, Raynham, Berkley, Dighton and Rehoboth.
Address: 17 - 19 School Street, Taunton MA 02780 - Massachusetts