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Sushi - Sushi Ingredients (Condiments) - Shiso

Shiso (Perilla Leaf)

Shiso

Shiso is was originally used as a sedative in eastern medicine. It has calming effects on the body and in sushi, it is used to lessen the taste of some ingredients that are overpowering. It can also be used with lighter tasting ingredients to enjoy the aromas of the shiso as well.

The aromas from the shiso mainly come from perillaldehyde and is often used in perfumes as well. Some shiso cultivated outside of Japan have a high content of perillaketone which may cause pulmonary emphysema in some small animals. The shiso leaves look identical, so caution should be taken for people who have respiratory problems.