Put a twist on it
What better occasion than International Sushi Day to take a look at how our chefs are re-imagining the Japanese dish? Here are a few of our favourites
Two decades ago, one might have recoiled at the thought of eating raw fish, but today, sushi is perhaps one of the most loved dishes here. As Mumbai experiences a paradigm shift in its foodscape with a slew of restaurants offering international cuisines (Ethiopian, Korean and Middle Eastern) opening in every nook and corner, Japanese food is finding a sweet spot among the city's diners. In fact, the love for sushi has gone a notch up with chefs turning them it into pizzas, burgers and more. On International Sushi Day, here are a few of the zaniest.
It's on fire
It turns out that the oh my god sushi (Rs 1,200) — made with salmon, tuna and yellow tail, and torched before serving — was first prepared for Imran Khan and his wife Avantika Malik, who had never tried the dish before. "Their faces lit up and their first reaction was, 'Oh my god!' That's where the name comes from," chef James Biaka recalls.
At Kofuku, Linking Road, Bandra West
Time 12 pm to 11.45 pm
Not a cake walk
Home chef Jayshree Biyani first ventured into making sushi, when her father-in-law brought back Japanese ingredients from his trip to the country. "Friends and family applauded me for my sushi and soon, rolls gave way to cakes after I discovered non-vegetarian sushi stacks on Pinterest," she tells us. Biyani's Thai flavoured edamame (R1,650) comprises curry paste and veggies.
At JB's Relish-ious, Malabar Hill (only pick-ups).
Time 11 am to 8 pm
Out of the box
"Sushi was served at high-end restaurants like Wasabi almost 10 years ago. Now it is common at standalone eateries as people are travelling abroad and the awareness has increased," chef Sahil Singh tells us, adding that the tuna, salmon and black tobiko sushi doughnut (R435 to R765) was Zorawar Kalra's idea, who owns the restaurant.
At Pa Pa Ya, Apollo Bandar, Colaba.
Time 12 pm to 1 am
One for the vegetarians
"We wanted our vegetarian customers to be able to enjoy sushi in a different and unique format," says chef Santosh Parulkar, explaining the concept behind his signature sushi burger (R400), which is a take on the Japanese moss burger, where the buns are replaced with sticky rice. The quirky dish also features a paneer patty in teriyaki sauce.
At Botanica Cafe and Diner, Chowpatty Bridge, Girgaum.
Time 12 pm to 11.30 pm
Vegan all the way
"While most people love authentic sushi, many don't like seafood. For them, vegan sushi is a healthy alternative," says Parvinder Singh, founder of this café, where nori sheets are replaced with fresh organic cucumber to give you the cucumber sushi (Rs 300). The dish also contains rice and grated veggies like radish and tomato and mustard, green chilli and ginger.
At Garde Manger Cafe, Parmar CHS,Vile Parle East.
Time 10 am to 11 pm
Sundar and sushi-l
Channel your love for the Asian savoury at this workshop with chef Farrokh Khambata where you can pick up the skill of sushi rolling.
At JOSS, Savoy Chambers, Santacruz West.
On Today, 5 pm
What's for dessert?
If you think sushi can't be sweet, try the winged cupid angels (R495), an uramaki sushi made with Nutella and banana. "Once, while conducting tastings in the kitchen, I happened to taste a chocolate dessert just before trying a sushi roll. And I realised that the unique taste in my mouth was worth exploring," chef Sagar Bajaj shares.
At Plum by Bent Chair, Kamala Mills, Lower Parel.
Time 12 pm to 1 am
. Season rice with sushi vinegar.
. Carefully lay the rice down on a crisp nori sheet.
. Torch the salmon and assemble on the rice.
. Squeeze some spicy sauce over it.
. Use a bamboo mat and roll the sushi spread to the middle, tap the top to get a good shape, then roll to the end of the square. Repeat the process.
. Cut the maki roll right down the centre and keep cutting till you get eight uniform pieces.
. Garnish ur roll with tobiko, shansho pepper, green onion.
. Serve light soy, gari pickle and wasabi on the side.
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