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7 Major Sushi Myths Busted

on 02nd Oct, 2017
What comes to your mind first when you think about Japanese food? In most cases, it’s somewhere along the lines of “Jackpot! Sushi it is!”

This goes to show sushi’s level of popularity even outside of Japan. Sushi is popular all across the globe with some of the best sushi restaurants popping up everywhere from France to the United States, to the UAE and Saudi.

Sushi is beloved and known across the globe and it’s definitely much more than a fad; it’s a long-established traditional dish of global popularity that’s here to stay.

Despite this, however, there still remains so many misconceptions about this awesome treat—from basics such as what exactly constitutes sushi to how it should properly be served. Well, lucky for you, we intend to dispel some of these myths today.

Myth 1: Sushi is raw fish.

It is the most prevalent parable to hear that in order for something to be sushi it absolutely must contain some form of raw fish.

The factual information is that sushi is a method of cooking and presenting vinegary rice with other constituents.

The toppings and fillings used in preparing sushi can be varied. What we can definitely say for sure is that rice is the basic ingredient in all of the many varied options.

Fish ironically enough is not necessarily the essential ingredient because sushi can very well be served with other types of meat and vegetables. 

Also important to note is that when sushi does contain fish, it doesn’t necessarily have to be raw fish. Unagi and anago (eel) is always served cooked with a sauce and many sushi includes a tempura battered fish which is deep fried.

California rolls include cooked imitation crab meat and there are many forms of smoked sushi which include meat that is cooked as well such as smoked salmon sushi.

BONUS INFORMATION: Did you know that “sushi” served without rice in the form of very thin slices of raw fish isn’t sushi at all? It’s actually called sashimi.

Myth 2: Sushi is always eaten with soy sauce.

You might have noticed many people dowsing heaps of soy sauce on their sushi before consuming it.

Fact: So, this is totally not necessary at all. While many people enjoy soy sauce, perhaps almost as much, if not more than the sushi itself, it is quite frequently consumed without.

To be honest, the rice is already seasoned properly so they really do not require much soy and many “purists” won’t use it at all because they feel it overpowers the natural flavors of the sushi, which is meant to be balanced perfectly all on its own.

Myth 3: California rolls are totally not considered sushi.

I mean, it’s not entirely too hard to understand how a traditional Japanese dish named after a US state could make some feel that it lacks a certain level of authenticity. While you still may find many sushi purists who tell you it isn’t “true” sushi, the fact of the matter is that technically, it is.

Fact: In Japanese, the word sushi refers to well-seasoned grained rice. It means anything made with specially seasoned rice is correct to be called the authentic sushi.

Myth 4: Sushi is pricey.

It might be true that expensive high-class sushi restaurants are pretty popular, but to be honest, sushi can be found at even your local grocery store. So, it’s kind of needless to say that you don’t necessarily always have to dole out the big bucks.

Fact: Most of the sushi dishes are quite reasonable to afford. You can always enjoy the real taste of sushi without worrying much about its price. Places such as Sushi Counter, actually considered one of the best sushi restaurants in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Saudi, remain absolutely reasonably priced.

Myth 5: Sushi is a daily staple in the Japanese diet.

Since sushi is always associated with Japan, many people just assume that it is a part of their daily diets.

Fact: The Japanese are known for being very health-conscious individuals in general. Their coastal proximity makes it possible for them to enjoy a wide variety of fresh, healthy dietary staples.

They also traditionally hold a strong belief in consuming balanced meals. That simply makes intake of sushi on daily basis quite impossible. The myth might hold some grounds for sushi aficionados, however, in general, it is not very common in Japanese people.

Myth 6:  Ginger is one of those random garnishes that no one eats with their sushi.

You might have noticed whenever you order sushi, ginger also comes along as a garnish. So why exactly is it there in the first place? You’ll find that a lot of people won’t even touch it, but the fact can be quite surprising to those who aren’t already aware.

Fact: Ginger actually has a specific purpose as a sushi garnish and isn’t just plopped on your plate for no reason whatsoever. In fact, it serves as a palate cleanser. Consuming it between the courses enables individuals to better appreciate the taste of the dish that follows. So, ginger is to sushi as coffee beans are to perfume.

Myth 7: Only men can make good sushi.

Ugh, we know this one is particularly annoying.

Fact: While many may see the inherent issue with this statement, the truth of the matter is that misogyny is still pretty rampant in the sushi chef world.

Especially in Japan, where there is often a huge discrimination against female sushi chefs. In fact, there have even been studies published making statements about this on the basis that women’s hands are “too warm” to make sushi compared to men. How crazy?

We were trained by male sushi chefs…Most of them regarded the female staff as merely window dressing. We were expected to just stand there and shape the rice. They didn't expect us to understand how to do more difficult tasks. Our only value to them was in our physical appearance. -Yuki Chizui

Despite its global popularity, sushi is still a misunderstood dish in many parts of the world. So, we hope that we’ve done our part to help you out by dispelling these 7 popular myths around this awesome dish.  

7 Major Sushi Myths Busted

What comes to your mind first when you think about Japanese food? In most cases, it’s somewhere along the lines of “Jackpot! Sushi it is!” This goes to show sushi’s level of popularity even outside of Japan. Sushi is popular all across the globe with some of the best...