It goes without saying that the love for sushi over the years has grown immensely. Consumers (and others) have learnt that sushi doesn’t just mean “a raw fish dish” but it’s the way the vinegared rice with nori sheets is served with different fillings and top that completes the dish. So, it’s safe to say that enjoying a good plate of sushi is no longer frowned upon.
Well, let’s look at the history behind the famous roll and how it became a fan favourite for many.
Research says that sushi originated in China between the 5th and 3rd centuries BC. The main reason for this invention was to preserve fish in salt.
Salt, rice and fish fermented with vinegar was used and had a shelf life of up to a year to consume. Interestingly, initially, the rice used to preserve the rice was thrown away and only the fish was consumed. This was known as naruzushi around the Yayoi period.
The dish eventually travelled from China to Japan in the 8th century.
However, when another variant called namanarezushi was invented in the 16th century, vinegared rice was used and also consumed.
The Japanese liked to eat their fish with rice. Known as namanare, it was partly raw fish wrapped in rice that was consumed fresh. Eventually, this way of eating wasn’t just known to be a form of preservation anymore but it became a new dish in Japanese cuisine.
During the Edo period, which is between 1603 and 1867, sushi saw a lot of takers. Many sushi restaurants opened at the time and some are still very well-spoken today. Research says that sushi made back then wasn’t the same as we know it today. The sushi was often cooked and served in large pieces.
But it was chef Hanaya Yohei who perfected the technique of sushi in 1824 at his restaurant in Tokyo. Following the trend, restaurants Kanukizushi and Matsunozushi (which still exists) also helped with the popularity of sushi.
When refrigeration eventually took over our kitchens, slices of raw fish went through another change. This allowed other types of fish, like tuna, to become popular. They could be served raw and the cooking or curing method wasn’t necessary, or rather, they weren’t suitable for the latter process before.
With the rise of other types of fish being given the limelight, sushi transformed into a festive food.
By the time it was World War II, the US occupation and the transition of international took place, Californians created their own version of sushi in the 1960s, taking the form of the inside-out roll.
It’s only been a number of inventions since then.
Now, since its inception more than 2,000 years, sushi has taken a whole new avatar. Chefs today experiment with different types of fillings, with local and international filings, customise it to the region and serve it to the customers.
When chef Abhijeeth Urs decided to start SushiMen in Bengaluru in 2018, he saw that the crowd for sushi was very niche. But he saw great potential.
In the last few years, SushiMen has seen an evolving menu from authentic sushi to innovative ones. Every dish we have on the menu is freshly prepared and carefully curated so that you’ll have the best sushi experience with every bite. We’ve even added vegetarian and vegan items on the menu and we’re proud to say that there are many takers for it too.
The latest items on the menu — Aphrodisiac Maki, Epicurean Maki, Rainbow Chirashi Bowl and Green Wave Maki — are made with ingredients that add the oomph factor to a perfect roll. It’s definitely innovative because each ingredient, be it the spicy mayo, nutmeg powder or the pomegranate seeds, adds the extra bit you need to make the sushi perfect.
So, when it comes to the evolution of sushi, Bengaluru has seen a drastic change. If history has taught us anything so far, it’s that the humble and delicious dish is only going to go through more changes.
Till then, keep following up and know what we are up to, while biting into the best of SushiMen items.