Different Types of Sushi Rolls

Different Types of Sushi Rolls. Japanese Food Infographic

Different Types of Sushi Rolls寿司

Do you know that in Sushi itself, there are so many variations?
How many types do you know?

Narezushi馴れ寿司 –

The origins of sushi is found in “Narezushi”. It began as a form of preserved fish from China between the 5th and the 3rd centuries BC and was introduced to Japan in Edo Period (1603-1868).
They were eaten during festivals and was an integral part of the celebration. Narezushi was made of fish and rice, mixed with salt, rice vinegar and sake and left to ferment. The rice was used solely for the fermentation process and discarded later.

This sour- tasting sushi took months to ferment and make. Shops sold this packed in boxes and that was the birth of sushi.

Towards the end of the Edo Period, a young man, Yohei Hanaya, created his first kind of “Nigiri” (hand- squeezed) sushi. He sold them by carrying a box on his back. Around 1828, Yohei started selling them at sushi stand. People got to know about this new type of bite- size sushi, which is like an early form of fast food conveniently eaten. His popularity rose resulting in prosperity in his business and the widespread of sushi.

Nigirizushi 握り寿司 –

For this type of sushi, you will find seafood like fish, octopus or shrimp on top of the sushi rice. It was invented about 190 years ago as bite sized finger food. It is the most popular kind of sushi in Japan.

Gunkanmaki 軍艦巻 –
Gunkanmaki is a type of nigirizushi with a strip of seaweed wrapped around the sushi rice to form like a warship (hence the name). The toppings can be filled with various kinds of seafood or even roes or corn etc.

Breaking it down, “maki” simply means meaning “roll”. So, Makizushi means “rolled sushi”. Generally, it is wrapped in seaweed, but occasionally it can be found wrapped in cucumber, a thin omelette or perilla leaves.

Inarizushi稲荷寿司 –
Inari is a pouch made of sweet deep- fried tofu skin, filled with sushi rice, shredded omelette, carrots and sesame seeds etc. If you like something sweet or fried tofu, you will like this tasty sushi in a tofu bag.

Futomaki 太巻 –
Futo literally translated means, thick or fat. It is usually a large cylindrical piece with nori wrapped around it. They are often made with two or more fillings and form a mixture of interesting colours, using cucumber, omelette, tiny fish roes, chopped tuna etc.

Hosomaki 細巻 –
Hoso is “thin” in Japanese, hence it is a small cylindrical piece, with seaweed on the outside. A typical hosomaki generally contain only one filling, like cucumber, pickled radish or tuna. It is small and easy to eat. As there is a very small amount of filling for each roll, the price is very reasonable at restaurants.

Temaki 手巻 –
“Te” stands for “hand” and it is shaped in a cone, wrapped by nori or seaweed for easy holding and eating using our hands. Temaki must be consumed quickly after being made as the nori cone loses its crispness, after absorbing moisture from the fillings, making it difficult to bite through. For this reason, the nori for take-out temaki is often sealed in plastic film, which is to be removed before eating.

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