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What is nigiri sushi

What is Nigiri Sushi?

Sushi doesn’t always mean “raw fish,” despite what many people believe. Sushi can be made with either raw fish or cooked seafood. “Sushi” refers to the vinegared rice included in the meal, not fish.

Su is the Japanese word for vinegar, while meshi is the term for rice. The two terms are therefore merged to form the word “sushi,” which means “vinegared or seasoned rice.” When appropriately prepared, the sweet vinegar added to the rice should only have a minor flavoring effect. It shouldn’t taste sour, acidic, or “vinegary.”

There are several methods to prepare Sushi, which are nutritious, tasty, and a kind of artistry. To become an expert sushi maker, one must put in much time, patience, and practice. The sushi menu might be daunting for the commoner just starting to become interested in Sushi. Among the dish on a sushi menu are makizushi, nigirizushi, and Sashimi.

The word Nigiri, also called nigirizushi, is prepared quite differently. Typically, it includes an oval or rectangular Suchi rice mound with a seafood topping made of salmon, eel, tuna, shrimp, or octopus on top.

Ingredients of Nigiri Sushi

Nigiri sushi is a popular type of sushi consisting of a thin slice of raw fish or prawns resting on a bed of sushi rice. This sushi dish’s oblong form is quite popular because it accentuates the fish or pierced meat rich taste. You may prepare it in many different ways. This implies that even if you can order the same type of fish frequently, it can be a different experience each time you eat it.

  • The sticky rice must be prepared with Japanese rice vinegar, salt, and sugar. When the Sushi rice has cooled, Nigiri preparation starts by hand-clumping the rice. The neto or seafood topping can then be added. The flavor of the fish can be changed by the rice because there are so many different methods to make sushi rice.
  • Seafood topping includes mainly tuna, sweet shrimp, shellfish, and eel. Raw fish and fresh water eel is frequently used to make Nigiri. The seafood is often eaten raw; however, occasionally, it may be barbecued or fried. In the west, Nigiri is frequently sweetened with either grilled eel or avocado.
  • The chef will frequently add a small quantity of wasabi between the rice and the fish. Japanese horseradish is referred to as wasabi. It is often bright green in appearance and has a potent taste.

    To flavor Sushi, just a little bit of wasabi is required. However, most sushi lovers avoid using wasabi because its strong flavor sometimes masks the natural taste of Sushi.

  • Some chefs like using a thin nori strip to secure the fish on the rice bed.

History Of Nigiri Sushi

Nigiri sushi was invented in Japan by Hanaya Yohei. When he first started, he was merely a guy selling oshizushi as he went from one place to another. Oshizushi is a hand pressed Sushi. The toppings are pressed into the rice in a wooden box, creating a beautiful, delectable mouthful.

Yohei, however, decided to start his sushi cafe. His Sushi restaurant quickly gained a lot of popularity. Finally, Yohei chose to prepare the Nigiri Sushi since it could be created much more rapidly, and he could soon serve an enormous number of clients.

Oshizushi requires longer to prepare since it must be squeezed into a container for fermentation. But, the edomae Sushi combines the vinegar rice with fresh fish or other seafood that has previously been hand pressed and seasoned. Nigiri sushi was designed for fast food for the sake of convenience. Yohei also devised various techniques to prepare Sushi, such as boiling the fish to preserve its freshness or marinating it in soy sauce.

The size of the nigiri sushi produced back then was double what we consume now. Serving a larger piece, unlike Nigiri now, ensures that the consumer is satisfied and finishes sooner, increasing business.

Difference Between Different Types of Sushi

Different Types of Sushi

There are several varieties of Sushi, the majority of which are native to Japan, while some are the inventions of chefs worldwide. Some of the newest versions are not technically Sushi but are served at many Sushi restaurants.


The makizushi, often known as a sushi roll, is among the Sushi restaurants’ most popular sushi rolls. In this dish, a fish or meat, seafood, and vegetables are rolled into vinegared rice and covered in a delicate nori sheet or dried seaweed. After that, pieces of the roll are cut. It is referred to as an “inside-out roll” when the nori is on the inside of the roll.


In addition to makizushi, some sushi restaurants now provide futomaki, a significantly thicker roll. Although they also use non-vegetarian toppings, these huge rolls frequently contain veggies or beef as a component.

California Roll

The California roll is one of the makizushi rolls that is arguably the most well-known. The California roll is often prepared as an uramaki (inside-out) roll and frequently includes cucumber, avocado, tuna and imitation crab meat. After that, it is covered in tobiko, masago, or toasted sesame seeds.

Tobiko is merely the salmon roe or the eggs of the flying fish. It is orange in color and has a mildly smoky and salty flavor. Masago is a Capelin roe with a similar flavor and appearance.


Sashimi refers to thin slices of raw fish. It isn’t served on a bed of rice or packed as a roll. Thee is no rice accompanying the small dish. It is raw meat, occasionally served with daikon and or Shiso leaves. Daikon Radish is shredded Japanese radish, and Shiso is a large green leaf.


It is a type of Sushi that is thinly rolled. The majority only have one topping. They come in various varieties, including tekkamaki, kappamaki, negitoromaki, and tsunamayomaki. Different fillings are used in different varieties of hosomaki.

Types of Sushi Nigiri

There are many types of Sushi. Check out these popular versions of Nigiri Sushi.

Gunkanzushi or Gunkan Maki

It is a Nigirizushi variant and is also referred to as battleship sushi. While it was recently invented, it is a relatively contemporary variety of Sushi. The cups are made by molding a mixture of rice and seaweed, then filling them with fish. It is often created when the toppings to be incorporated are soft and semi-liquid, including fish eggs, minced tuna, fish roe, or sea urchin.

It resembles a battleship due to the nori strip wrapped around the rice mound’s edge. The top edge forms a bowl-like container that rises above the rice and holds the topping.

Nori-Ribbon Nigiri

It is a different variety of Nigiri, in which the topping is fastened to the mound of rice by a thin strip of nori. It is wrapped vertically around the Nigiri and knotted or secured. This is done when the topping doesn’t have enough moisture to stick to the rice adequately.

Strips of grilled shrimp or cooked eel are used to make unagi sushi. Tamagoyaki sushi is topped with an omelet that has been sweetened.

How to Eat Nigiri Sushi

Nigiri sushi can be consumed in various exciting ways that affect its taste. However, Nigiri should be eaten such that the fish touches your tongue first when you eat it.

You will miss out on the essential fish taste if you eat your nigiri sushi rice down. Sushi chefs diligently create Nigris Sushi with your choice of fish toppings so that you may experience the original flavors. So, take some time eating it to enjoy all its flavors.

Many individuals enjoy the taste of soy sauce with their nigiri sushi. However, it must be dipped into the soy sauce and wasabi in a very particular manner. In addition, it may be pretty hard to eat Sushi Nigiri if the soy sauce moistens the rice.

So, when eating Nigiri, you should dip the fish piece in soy sauce. Doing this will not crumble the rice bet when you try to consume it.

Eating Sushi is nearly as much of an artistic endeavor as making it. You can use your two fingers or chopsticks to consume nigiri sushi. Yet when eating Sushi, you should be sure to discard nothing.

Sushi is intended to be eaten entirely, and if any of it is left on your platter unattended, it is thought a disrespect to the sushi chef. It’s acceptable if you never choose Sushi to eat from the main serving tray, though. Likewise, it is not regarded as disrespectful if the Sushi is left on the main serving plate because it is untouched.

Sushi nigiri is meant to be eaten in single bite. But if you have a huge piece cut fish, you can finish it in two bites. Except for temaki, Sushi should not be consumed in more than two bites.


Compared to Sushi served in Japan, Sushi presented in the European and American continents is markedly different as it has undergone extensive adaptation to suit Western palates. The next time you visit a Japanese restaurant and want to try Sushi, prepare to be wowed by its authentic and mouth-watering tastes.

The best ingredients are added to Nigiri in the sushi restaurant Rika Moon. Enjoy the delight of fresh and delectable fish by treating yourself to a selection of delicious Nigiri.


Laurent Fine dining,
107 Duncan Avenue, New York
Open: 09:00 am – 01:00 pm

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We invite you to celebrate this New Year's Eve with us. Join us for the perfect party.
Come join us at Rika Moon!
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