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The Book Of Sushi

Posted By: Smiles
The Book Of Sushi

The Book Of Sushi By Jean Pierre Rampal, Kinjiro Omae & and Yuzuru Tachibana
Kodansha Europe | 0870118668 | PDF | 127 Pages | 1988 | 35.3 Mb

Discover how to enjoy the sushi shop with savoir-faire, how to become a connoisseur, and even how to make and serve this intriguing, delightfully refreshing dish in your own home.


Sushi, that so typical Japanese food, has a history going back to prehistoric times. Over the centuries it has been refined into a surprising number of variations, from the simplest everyday fare–such as tuna wrapped in vinegared rice and crisp vitamin-rich nori seaweed–to elegant and imaginative sushi created for festive occasions. The centerpiece of this book is Edomae-zushi, the delicate, natural, fresh variety first made in Tokyo in the early nineteenth century and now popular throughout the world.

The sushi shop, with its scrubbed wooden counter and fillets of raw fish sleeping in refrigerated cases right before the diner's eyes, is a memorable experience in itself but faced with such variety–and the special vocabulary of the sushi world–how and what does one order, how does one truly appreciate it? The answers are all here. The reader of The Book of Sushi will come to understand the basics of what the sushi chef must learn during his long apprenticeship: how fish and other seafoods are carefully selected, the season when certain species are at their best, how the fish and rice and other ingredientssome fresh from the mountains rather than the sea–are prepared in the most tasteful and tasty way. Here, too, are the utensils and techniques, fully illustrated, of sushi making and an assessment of the nutritional value of this marvelous, low-calorie source of vitamins and healthy, uncontaminated protein.

The focus is always on the traditional–the best sushi–and with this beautifully illustrated book as a guide, the reader will know not only how to enjoy the sushi shop with savoir-faire, how, in fact, to become a connoisseur, but how to make and serve this intriguing, delightfully refreshing dish at home. Whether you're a near connoisseur or virtual novice, there's always more to learn about sushi. The Book of Sushi is jammed with tips on how to make these succulent morsels yourself, or order them like a veteran at a sushi bar. Learn to tell at a glance if fish is really fresh. Learn just what the sushi master's training entails. Learn just how good for you this dish really is. There's just one drawback: the more you learn about sushi, the more you'll probably start liking it. You may find sushi getting to be a habit.

Product Description:
Sushi, that so typical Japanese food, has a history going back to prehistoric times. Over the centuries it has been refined into a surprising number of variations, from the simplest everyday fare–such as tuna wrapped in vinegared rice and crisp vitamin-rich nori seaweed–to elegant and imaginative sushi created for festive occasions. The centerpiece of this book is Edomae-zushi, the delicate, natural, fresh variety first made in Tokyo in the early nineteenth century and now popular throughout the world.

The sushi shop, with its scrubbed wooden counter and fillets of raw fish sleeping in refrigerated cases right before the diner's eyes, is a memorable experience in itself but faced with such variety–and the special vocabulary of the sushi world–how and what does one order, how does one truly appreciate it? The answers are all here. The reader of The Book of Sushi will come to understand the basics of what the sushi chef must learn during his long apprenticeship: how fish and other seafoods are carefully selected, the season when certain species are at their best, how the fish and rice and other ingredientssome fresh from the mountains rather than the sea–are prepared in the most tasteful and tasty way. Here, too, are the utensils and techniques, fully illustrated, of sushi making and an assessment of the nutritional value of this marvelous, low-calorie source of vitamins and healthy, uncontaminated protein.

The focus is always on the traditional–the best sushi–and with this beautifully illustrated book as a guide, the reader will know not only how to enjoy the sushi shop with savoir-faire, how, in fact, to become a connoisseur, but how to make and serve this intriguing, delightfully refreshing dish at home. Whether you're a near connoisseur or virtual novice, there's always more to learn about sushi. The Book of Sushi is jammed with tips on how to make these succulent morsels yourself, or order them like a veteran at a sushi bar. Learn to tell at a glance if fish is really fresh. Learn just what the sushi master's training entails. Learn just how good for you this dish really is. There's just one drawback: the more you learn about sushi, the more you'll probably start liking it. You may find sushi getting to be a habit.

Inside the Sushi Shop:

"Iras-shai, iras-shai, irasshai!"

The voices that convey this vigorous and clear greeting the minute you walk into the sushi shop are those of the man who makes the sushi–the itamae-san–and his assistants. Such greetings are not unusual in Japan's restaurants and retail establishments, but there is something special about the variety heard in the sushi shop.

The decor of a sushi shop may vary in accordance with its location and the year it was built, but certain items are essential to all. Most conspicuous is the spotlessly clean hinoki cypress counter, at the back of which, in refrigerated glass cases, are arrayed the colorful, carefully prepared fish, shellfish, vegetables and other ingredients that tempt both eye and palate. Behind the counter, ready to form bite-sized servings by hand, stands the sushi chef in his starched white coat and white hat. His busy helpers may be there too, although they must spend a good deal of time in the kitchen, seeing to the painstaking preparations which are essential to the apparently effortless virtuosity of the chef's performance. The assistants have climbed the long ladder from kitchen worker to their present status and hope to become sushi chefs themselves someday. Their training is long (at least five years) and not everyone who starts at the bottom rung makes it to the top of the ladder.

For first-time customers, the world of the sushi shop can be a bit perplexing. They may wonder whether to sit at the counter or at one of the tables. Waiters and chefs, who are adept at judging what customers may need, will encourage obvious gourmets to make themselves comfortable at the counter, where they can select and enjoy their favorite sushi. Other customers may be discreetly directed to a table, where they will probably order one of the combination sets and eat and drink little else.

The customers in a shop serving only sushi are not offered a detailed menu after being seated, as they would be in other kinds of restaurants. However, to simplify the task of selection, some sushi shops in Japan do post large, colored diagrams illustrating the standard types of sushi offered almost everywhere. In the United States, solicitous shop proprietors place plastic-covered charts with pictures showing sushi types and ingredients on their tables and counters.

The reason prices are not displayed in the better sushi shops is that maintaining the highest standards depends on buying the finest and freshest fish daily. The availability of the choicest fish varies, and prices in both the fish market and the sushi shop can fluctuate from day to day.

Knowing what to order requires the experience and knowledge sushi chefs devote years to acquiring. Since the new customer can scarcely be expected to command such knowledge, the wisest entry into this world is to ask the man behind the counter what is good that day and to rely on his judgment.

About the Author:
Kinjiro Omae was born in 1910 in the center of Tokyo, the son of a famous sushi maker. He became chairman of the Tokyo Sushi Association and then president of the Federation of Japan Sushi Shops. He was the leading expert on the techniques of making Edomae-zushi, the most popular type of sushi today, and was chairman of the committee which judged sushi-making contests.

Yuzuru Tachibana was born in Tokyo in 1931 and graduated from Gakushuin University in 1955. He holds a professional chef's license, and as president of International Foods Corporation oversaw the management of Benkay, a chain of Japanese restaurants established in eleven major cities of the world.

Jean-Pierre Rampal was born in Marseillle, France, where he studied flute with his father. He was the first flutist to achieve world-wide popularity and has restored the flute to the position it enjoyed during the 18th century. Among the many countries he has visited, Japan holds a special fascination, and he deeply admires all aspects of Japanese culture, particularly its food and especially sushi.

Reviews:
The Joy of Sushi!, 06 Dec 2006
This book is true fun to read. Pictures are spare, elegant, and profuse; for a good ways in the middle of the book, every other page is a full-color photo designed to remind you how various forms of sushi relate to the passing of the seasons.

The text is clear - very readable - and the author's love for the history, tradition and eating of sushi shines through. Tips on what to order don't feel like prescriptions so much as suggestions; I especially appreciated the explanation of which types of fish are good during different parts of the year. The book is crammed with practical information like this - Omae points out that maki rolls should be eaten first, not because of some obscure protocol, but because the seaweed-paper wrapper may not hold up as moisture soaks into it. And it may sound obvious in retrospect, but I'd never actually realized that you're not supposed to dip the rice part of nigiri-zushi into the soy sauce; rather, you hold it 'upside down' and just wet the fish.

This book will make you want to go out and eat more sushi, and if you're a thoughtful person like me, all that good information will probably enhance the experience. 5 stars!

Real value for money:
This is absolutely the best of the 6 Sushi books I have. In fact the simple form of this book contains the whole idea of sushi - keep it simple and yet delicious. There are not many colour illustrations but the plain line drawings tell you exactly what you need to know about preparing fish or making maki rolls. In addition to actual recipes the book has stories about fish markets and sushi bars in Japan. If you want to have a book which you can leave casually on a coffee table do not buy this book but if you want to know about sushi or even want to make sushi yourself this is the only book you'll ever need.

A Introduction to Sushi:
I found this book to be a fine introduction to sushi and sushi making. Not only are the basic techniques of sushi making described, but the authors also include a wealth of information about sushi in general. Topics covered include the history of sushi, the process of obtaining fish for sushi, the etiquette of sushi eating, and much more. For those interested in simliar books, I must recommend Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art. Together these works will give a novice everything they need to know about sushi and the cooking of Japan.
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A visual feast!, 22 Nov 2005
Reviewer: A reader
Despite working in Tokyo for one month I only sampled Sushi the day before I came home - and loved it!!! In England there are few Sushi bars and most are prohibitively expensive. This book provides an excellent insight into Sushi culture and has enhanced my enjoyment of this delicacy enormously.
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Good book for learning what good sushi is, 7 Jul 2004
Reviewer: A reader
I wanted a book that would help me understand the difference between ordinary sushi (which is all over the place here) and great sushi. After reading this book, you'll know enough about sushi to at least recognize what you're about to eat, and what to do when in a sushi restaurant.
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