Is this sashimi or nigiri? These two sushi dishes are often confused – we explain the subtle difference.
Nigiri and sashimi are popular Japanese sushi cuisine but differ in several ways. These are the differences:
- Nigiri consists of a small, compressed lump of rice, often topped with a piece of raw fish, shrimp or other seafood. It may also be wrapped with a nori (seaweed) strip that holds the rice and topping together.
Sashimi, on the other hand, consists only of raw fish or other seafood and comes without rice or nori.
In terms of preparation, sashimi and nigiri also differ:
Nigiri requires the art of shaping the rice and is often served with wasabi between the rice and the fish.
On the other hand, Sashimi greatly emphasises how the fish is cut and presented.
Presentation is another difference:
- Nigiri is often served in pairs and is more substantial because of the rice.
- Sashimi is usually in thin slices on a decorative plate, often accompanied by garnishes such as radish and shiso leaves.
In terms of taste, nigiri offers a combination of the flavour of the rice and the toppings, while sashimi focuses on the pure taste of the fish or seafood.
Finally, the way it is eaten also varies:
- Nigiri is often eaten with the fingers and the fish is lightly dipped in soy sauce.
- For sashimi, you usually use chopsticks and dip the fish in soy sauce, often mixed with wasabi.
Now you know your stuff, don’t you?