Nigirizushi

sushi

Nigirizushi [ni-geer-ee-zoo-shee] (‘hand-formed sushi’) is an oblong mound of sushi rice that the chef presses into a small rectangular box between the palms of the hands, usually with a bit of wasabi, and a topping draped over it (typically seafood). Certain toppings are bound to the rice with a thin strip of nori (seaweed), most commonly octopus (tako), freshwater eel (unagi), sea eel (anago), squid (ika), and sweet egg (tamago). When ordered separately, nigiri is generally served in pairs. A sushi set (a sampler dish) may contain only one piece of each topping.

Gunkanmaki (‘warship roll’) is a special type of nigirizushi: an oval, hand-formed clump of sushi rice that has a strip of nori wrapped around its perimeter to form a vessel that is filled with some soft, loose or fine-chopped ingredient that requires the confinement of nori such as roe, natto, oysters, sea urchin, corn with mayonnaise, and quail eggs. Temarizushi (‘ball sushi’) is a ball-shaped sushi made by pressing rice and fish into a ball-shaped form by hand using a plastic wrap.

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