Eel Sushi

unagi

Unagi

If you’d like a taste of Japan, no food is more emblematic of the country than sushi. For the more adventurous type, you can add a unique twist to your sushi by  including traditional ingredients such as eel and wasabi. Another word for eel is unagi. Unagi sushi is very popular in many sushi places. Eel has a unique and different taste to it then the regular fish you typically eat at a sushi restaurant. Unagi is typically fresh water eel. You can find it at most Asian markets and stores. It is usually bought raw and has to be cooked. You can also fined it prepackaged and ready to consume.

 

eel_sushi

If you have raw eel, it is very simple to cook. I used a regular toaster oven to cook it. Put foil on a pan, and spray it with some oil so the eel will not stick to it. Season the eel with salt. I used Worcester sauce to give it a nice flavor. Put it into the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes. You can tell when it is cooked when the eel is flaky.

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Once the unagi is done, let it cool off a little bit. It is best served warm. It is also easier to cut up as it much more firm. You will have to cut it into diagonal pieces as shown above. Do not make the pieces too big as they are going to be going onto rice balls. I typically make them 2 fingers wide.

Prepare your rice. You must have sushi rice as regular rice will not hold together as good. Sushi rice is short grain rice. Rinse out the rice and cook it using a rice cooker or on the stove. Let the rice cool off before working with it by putting it in the fridge.  Season the rice with rice vinegar and salt. Mix it up well until it begins to clump together.

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You will want to smear the skin side of the eel with wasabi. Wasabi will act as our glue to hold the rice and unagi together. If you do not have wasabi, you can use nori. Cut the seaweed into a thin strip. Wrap it around the eel and rice like a string.

unagi_nigiri

Make a rice oval ball that is about the size of your two fingers. Clump it together so the rice does not fall apart. Take the eel and put it against the rice ball on the side where you smeared it with wasabi. The skin should be facing the rice. Press lightly so the two stick together. You do not want to apply too much pressure or you will dent the rice ball or break the eel into two pieces.

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Repeat this process for all the slices of unagi you have. These are pretty simple and easy to make. This recipe is the nigiri style of sushi. You can also make eel sushi in the roll form. This is made like a regular sushi roll, but with eel as one of the ingredients. Below is a video on how to make eel sushi rolls.

 

 

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