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Sushi VS Sashimi:
The Beginner's Guide

Sushi and Sashimi are two of the most popular Japanese dishes around the world. But what’s the difference between them? And which one should you try first? In this article, we will discuss the basics of Sushi and Sashimi, and help you decide which one is right for you!

Sushi and Sashimi

Sashimi is raw meat that has been finely sliced and is typically eaten without rice. The meat is usually fish, like salmon or tuna. Rice with vinegar is combined with additional components, which may or may not also include raw fish, to make sushi rather than raw fish.

The phrases “Sashimi” and “Sushi” may be used synonymously in some countries, although this is wrong. Sushi is typically made using raw fish as one of its basic ingredients, but it can also be produced without meat or with cooked seafood as long as rice and vinegar are included. Sashimi, on the other hand, is always made using fresh, raw meat or seafood.


The Origin 

Sushi’s origins in Japan date back to the 8th century. Sushi’s initial form was created in Southeast Asia as a way to preserve fish in fermented rice. People started eating rice in addition to fish during the Muromachi era. Rice was fermented with vinegar during the Edo period, rather than Lacto-fermentation. It is fast food that is still popular in Japan and has strong ties to its culture.

How is sushi made?

Sushi is a Japanese dish that consists of tiny bits of raw fish wrapped in rice and seaweed. Submerged bamboo nets are used to collect the seaweed, known as nori. Sushi prepared by robots isn’t as good as hand-crafted sushi. The finest sushi is made with specific kinds of fish with the highest fat content, color, and visual appeal.

The sushi chef slices the fish into little pieces and combines them with spices such as ginger root. Wasabi and soy sauce are widely used to season sushi rolls. Vinegar from fermented rice is used to flavor the rice wrap for the fish and spices. Finally, some of the nori is included in the roll.

The different types of sushi

There are many ways to prepare sushi. Nigiri and Maki are the two basic varieties of sushi. When you say “sushi,” most people immediately picture maki, which is rice rolled around some fish and pickled vegetables and then topped with noki, or seaweed. A seafood dish known as a nigiri is served over rice that has been vinegared.


Maki doesn’t just have to be made with raw fish; it can be made with virtually anything. Everywhere you go, maki rolls are fairly popular, and many people enjoy eating them for lunch or even with a few beers. Every ingredient you can imagine is used to create maki rolls:

  • raw fish
  • smoked fish
  • cooked fish
  • ham
  • chicken
  • beef
  • sea cucumber
  • mussels
  • octopus
  • cream cheese

Maki rolls are different, typically healthful, and balanced as a meal, which accounts for their ongoing popularity. Some include seaweed, some do not, some have fish roe, and some do not.


Nigiri sushi is probably what you think of when you hear the word “sushi.” It is sushi rice with a piece of fish or some other seafood on top of it. The most common type of nigiri sushi is maguro (tuna) nigiri, but there are many others including salmon, shrimp, and eel nigiri.

The Proper Way To Eat Sushi

When it comes to eating sushi, there are a few things you should know. Here are some tips: don’t mix your wasabi and soy sauce; dip your nigiri into the sauce fish-side down; use the pickled ginger as a palate cleanser; don’t rub your chopsticks together, and eat your sushi the way the locals do.

Sushi Grade Fish

The word “sushi-grade fish,” when it appears on a product label at a store, simply means that the fish is of excellent quality and that you can eat it raw with confidence. Fish are flash-frozen on board after they are caught to get rid of any parasites they might have.



The Origin 

The Muromachi period gave rise to the phrase “sashimi,” which means “pierced body.” The name probably comes from the customary manner of gathering “Sashimi-grade” fish, which involves hand-lining each fish. The brain of the fish is immediately punctured with a sharp spike after it has been caught, and it is then placed on ice to preserve its freshness.

The Flavors of Sashimi

Seasoning the fish will enhance the flavor of the fish, bringing out the tastes of the flesh as your mouth rolls around uncooked fish and you begin to feel the texture of the meat that should be smooth but never slimy until you swallow. The aftertaste is where all of the taste comes through, generally with a little spritz of heat from the wasabi. 

Types of Sashimi

The following are some of the most frequent types of Sashimi seen throughout Japan:

  • Maguro (tuna) – The majority of the fish is eaten. Akami, the deep red loins of fish that are lean, firm, and meaty, is the most frequent.
  • Sake (salmon) – Its bright orange flesh is delicate, fatty, and delightful.
  • Saba (mackerel) – When in season, saba is often relished as sashimi. The rich, meaty flavor of its oily flesh pairs beautifully with grated ginger and green onions.
  • Ika (squid) – The second most popular seafood served as sashimi after tuna is ika. The ika’s mantle has translucent white flesh with a firm firmness and a moderate flavor.
  • Tai (sea bream) – Tai, with its light, delicate flavor, is one of the most popular white-fleshed fish in Japanese cuisine.

How to Eat Sashimi

Sashimi is commonly served on a platter or ice with some sort of garnish, such as shredded daikon radish, shiso perilla herb, kogiku chrysanthemum flower, benitade (red water pepper sprouts), and occasionally even the head and tails of the fish from which the sashimi was cut or the shells that the shellfish was taken from. Soy sauce and grated wasabi horseradish are typically provided for seasonings, although ponzu, a citrus-y soy sauce, may also be offered.

When eating sashimi, use chopsticks and avoid overloading each slice with condiments, which overwhelm the fish’s taste.

Are You Looking for Delicious Japanese Food and Some Family-Friendly Entertainment?

You’ve never had food this good! Kimono Restaurant offers a great place to take your family for entertainment, delicious eats, and fun. We start with the highest quality ingredients before grilling them right in front of you on our hibachi grill–the perfect way to get involved by watching as we prepare it just how YOU want it so there will be no surprises at all when they bite into your meal. This experience also gives us an opportunity to show off some amazing tricks which is where being entertained comes into play; our talented chefs will astound you even further by flipping meats around wildly or doing some other intricate, spectacular feats. If you’re looking for the perfect place to take your family for food, fun and entertainment, Kimono Japanese Restaurant in Benicia and Pleasanton, California, can’t be beaten! Join us today and experience the Kimono difference.