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Mackerel Sushi

Mackerel Sushi

Saba Sushi

Makerel is grouped as a shiny fish, which are usually more economical in price for their abundance. They are also known to spoil very quickly, and Mackerel is notorious for being the quickest one to do so. Therefore it is usually cured in salt for 3 to 4 hours and then washed with rice vinegar. This is called shime saba or cured mackerel. The mackerel sushi is always prepared as so. Eating mackerel raw without professional advice is considered unsanitary. Mackerel can only be eaten raw right after it is caught; a delicacy enjoyed only by fishermen. However there are a few local fisherman in Japan (especially in the Kyushu region of southern Japan) that bring them in live, so they can be prepared as sushi or sashimi in its raw state, but it is a local delicacy and not common. Saba also requires quite a lot of skill to fillet, since the flesh breaks very easily.

It is very rich in oil and has a slight dry aftertaste. Very high in omega-3 oils and Vitamin E. Considered one of the healthiest sushi, but not the most popular.  Mackerel has been cured in Japan for centuries, and has become popular in inland cities, such as Kyoto, which is famous for their own stick type mackerel sushi called the bo-sushi or bozuzshi.

Wasabi should be enough to accentuate a properly cured mackerel, but many people worry about the mackerel's overpowering aftertaste, and that can be due to over curing. This kills the aromas of the Mackerel and leaves it only with a fishy scent (fish oil). Grated ginger and sliced scallions are often accompanied for this reason.

Complete Tutorial on: How to Make Sushi

Also see: Mackerel in Sushi Fish

Popular styles for mackerel sushi: Boxed (Battera)

Popular condiments for mackerel sushi: Wasabi, or Shoga, Negi
Specialty: Raw Mackerel (Often consumed with soy sauce and sesame)
Category: Shiny Fish (Hikarimono)