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Fingers or sticks while eating Nigri?
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  1. #1

    Fingers or sticks while eating Nigri?

    I have a question.

    According to the right way to eat sushi you should not mix wasabi with the soy sauce. You should also not dip the rice, but the fish. I have trouble using my sticks for this task, as I grab the nigiri. Should I use my fingers when eating nigiri?

    What about the maki? Eat with sticks and dip or not?

    If I like wasabi, should I then add the wasabi on the rice or the fish?

  2. #2
    From what I understand, you can use your hands or chopsticks for nigiri and maki. Some people say hands are the "right" way, but a lot of asians don't like to eat with their hands.

    Me? I'm a hands-on person when it comes to nigiri and maki

    If I decide to add a bit more wasabi (or if whoever made the nigiri didn't even add any), I'll smear a bit on top of the fish. I only lightly dip one end of the fish into my soya sauce, so getting that wasabi into my soya isn't an issue.
    Len

  3. #3
    Fingers.

    Dont dip. Use the gingers as a brush to put sauce on the fish, if its neceasary. Dont use wasabi unless its fresh. Wasabi in soy sauce.

    After digesting each piece, eat ginger and maybe drink tea to refresh your taste.

    Start with the lightest favor fishs first and heaviest last.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by oivind_dahle View Post
    I have a question.

    According to the right way to eat sushi you should not mix wasabi with the soy sauce. You should also not dip the rice, but the fish. I have trouble using my sticks for this task, as I grab the nigiri. Should I use my fingers when eating nigiri?

    What about the maki? Eat with sticks and dip or not?

    If I like wasabi, should I then add the wasabi on the rice or the fish?
    Using your fingers is accepted practice for sushi. That's how my relatives and I ate sushi at Daiwa Sushi at Tsukiji. Definitely do not dip the rice into the soy sauce.

    Actually, if you go to a good/real sushi restaurant, you should not need to add either soy sauce or wasabi as the sushi should have the appropriate sauce (and amount) on each piece; if anything, you'll just need to add a little soy sauce.

    With sashimi, which comes unadulterated, put a little wasabi on each piece of fish, and dip into soy sauce (or other sauce provided). Do not use your fingers.

    Also, it's taboo to put the ginger on the fish and eat them together. As far as using the ginger as a brush to put additional soy sauce on your sushi, I've never seen that as an accepted practice.

    Lastly, depending on where you go, the itamae-san may or may not go light flavored fish to heavy flavored fish. In Japan, I've seen toro served early on in a series of sushi so that one's palate gets to enjoy the full richness and fattiness of toro before numerous other courses, and, as was once explained to me, before palate fatigue.
    Michael
    "Don't you know who he is?"

  5. #5
    Brushing with ginger depends on the fish and per chef instruction.

    And yes, no soy sauce on anything.

    Eating say, a smoked fish first, will kill your palate for very light flavored fish. But it all depends on the judgement of the omakase chef.

  6. #6
    Sushi and Maki are to the japanese what sandwiches are to the west I believe (if discovery channel is credible at all), hence eat with hands.

    No wasabi in the soy, I add on top of the morsel.

    Never heard of using ginger as a brush. Yes to ginger as a pallette cleanser. Typically I don't add soy to any sushi or maki, in a good restaurant it shouldn't need it.

    Now, in a sub par place, just do as you wish since everyone else will be enhancing flavour willy nilly howeverwhich way they want.

    On a related note:
    It is always funny (in an endearing way) when foreigners come into a chinese restaurant and struggle to eat fried rice and other rice dishes exclusively with their chopsticks. Then the locals look at them and go at it with forks and spoons because the rice is served on a plate, not in a small bowl which is when you use chopsticks.

    I think a quick glance at the locals will go a long way towards guiding how prim you need to be, and what passes as correct for the place. Most don't eat lamb racks by hand in 2 michelin starred restaurants (I still would clean up the bone by hand if it is yum, sorry), but they do it all the time in family joints. Same applies I think?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tristan View Post

    I think a quick glance at the locals will go a long way towards guiding how prim you need to be, and what passes as correct for the place. Most don't eat lamb racks by hand in 2 michelin starred restaurants (I still would clean up the bone by hand if it is yum, sorry), but they do it all the time in family joints. Same applies I think?
    Yup +1 to that. I if I go to a cheaper sushi place, every one has wasabi in their soy sauce. And the wasabi is made using wasabi powder... So I guess it does not matter how you eat it as they don't care to properly season your rice. If lets say I go to a 200~300 buck per meal japanese restaurant, I would definitly rely on the chef's instructions. But to me the most important thing is that I'm comfortable eating what I want to eat, however I want to eat it. The bottom line is enjoying the meal.

  8. #8
    Senior Member rockbox's Avatar
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    I try to avoid using my hands. My woman doesn't like me copping a feel with fishy/vinegary hands.
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." --Albert Einstein

  9. #9
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    i agree with madmel
    what are these silly rules about?
    id have to say if you like eating sushi enjoy it as you please.
    i usually mix wasabi in the soy.
    i will eat with both chop sticks and my fingers.

    haha now maybe if you ordered a bunch of nigiri and maki then decided to mash it all up and eat fork fulls or fingers full... that might be on the not okay side but i doubt they stop serving you food; just talk about you for a long time after you leave.

  10. #10
    Senior Member spinblue's Avatar
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    I agree better sushi doesn't need the soy and wasabi as much.

    The way I learned to eat nigiri, fingers, maybe light soy on the fish side and eat the nigiri upside down so the fish flavors burst on the taste buds.

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