Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Merits of Sushi

Today, I am going for sushi with one of my friends from school.

Sushi, if you are curious or have never heard of it, is a Japanese thing consisting of fresh, raw fish.  It can be served two ways: traditional rolls wrapped with rice, fish, veggies, and seaweed (I'm pretty sure it's seaweed, but I've also heard it's algea, so I don't actually know...) or as just fish on lumps of rice.

Both are delicious.

A lot of people have funny feelings about sushi.  I think it has something to do with not cooking the fish.  Afterall, we live in a very germphobic society - everything must be cooked or else you will get sick.  I've known people who don't eat raw cookie dough for that very reason.

Take it from me, guys, sushi is great.  I am a complete germaphobe.  If food lands on the ground, I typically will not eat it.  If someone sneezes in the vacinity of me or my food, I have to repress urges to purge and clean.  I carry spray sanitizer and make people use it.  I'm that kind of person.

And I love sushi.

Fresh fish, when prepared properly, has a wonderful flavor.  It's got a nice, smooth texture and is cool to the mouth.  It does not taste "fishy".  It does not smell "fishy".  It usually looks pretty too - tuna is deep red in color, salmon more of a bright red, halibut is white, etc.  Add some veggies like cucumbers and avacado, and you've got some beautiful sushi on your plate.  And some sushi is actually cooked to a degree; tuna can be seared lightly and crab meat for California rolls is always cooked.  So if that's what's weirding you out about it, don't let it.

My favorite sushi is from Tokyo Joe's.  I've only been to two sushi bars before, and I really wasn't impressed with either one.  My goal is to find a really good one that my sister and I can go to this summer; until then, Tokyo Joe's wins on so many levels.  They make the sushi in full view of you.  The fish is all kept on ice so there's no risk of it spoiling.  Their rice is also made differently than other sushi places - it tastes sweeter to me, which is another reason I like it.

 I love the Spicy Tuna Roll.  It's my absolute favorite.  It's seared tuna, a spicy chili sauce (it's delicious and not over powering), cucumber, avacado, and green onion.  They wrap it with rice and the green stuff mentioned before and serve it cut side up.  Mix a little wasabi and soy sauce, and you are good to go.

The first I ever tried was the California Roll.  It's crab, avacado, and cucumber wrapped up like the tuna one.  It's a good beginner one.  Unagi is good too.  I was hesitant to try it, because it's eel (yeah, that's right, eel), but one of my best friends insisted.  I'm really glad she did.  What they do is take eel, egg (don't think too hard), avacado, and cucumber and wrap it up.  Then they top it with this eel sauce that tastes almost like a BBQ sauce.  You wouldn't think it would work, but it does.

And there are so many others out there.  That's about the extent of what Tokyo Joe's serves, but I've had some decent Red Snapper sushi and some good Yellowfin.  You just have to pick and choose where you go.  That's what it amounts to.

And remember: don't over think it while you eat it.  Just enjoy.  That is, afterall, the point.


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