Nigiri Sushi Recipe – The Perfect Nigiri at Home

Nigiri Sushi
nigiri sushi with salmon

Nigiri sushi (also known as nigirizushi) is a type of Japanese sushi known in the West. A piece of seaweed (nori) is sometimes used to keep the fish in place on the rice. The type of fish (or seafood) used is very varied : salmon, tuna, shrimp, eel (unagi), octopus, squid, sea urchins or crab. To succeed with this recipe, it is essential to control the quality and freshness of the fish you use. For this recipe, choose shrimp and fresh salmon of very good quality or, if not that, then at least you can use smoked salmon. It is also interesting to note that there are several vegetarian variants of nigiri sushi which is then made from seasoned or pickled vegetables (carrot, mushrooms, asparagus, avocados or tofu).


Preparation time: 20 minutes

To make 16 nigiri sushi pieces:

Preparing Nigiri Sushi with shrimp and salmon

Start by preparing your rice as indicated in this sushi rice recipe. This is the indispensable step in the realization of the nigiri sushi. Prepare a mixture of water and vinegar in a bowl. Then moisten your hands with this dressing water mixture and make sure you keep your hands moistened throughout the preparation to prevent the rice from sticking.

You have to use your hands

To make the nigiri salmon, cut the salmon into thin slices about 1 cm thick and 3 cm long. Boil the shrimp, let them cool and peel them before cutting them in half. Then leave your shrimp and salmon slices at hand. Take the equivalent of a tablespoon of rice in your hand and shape it to a nice oval shape. To do this, partially close your hand by holding the rice ball in your palm and then apply enough pressure for the rice to adhere properly. Be careful not to make them too big because the nigiri sushi must be able to be tasted with a single bite.

Shape the rice ball

In your left hand (if you are right-handed), take a slice of fish. With the index finger of your right hand, spread a small wasabi hazelnut in the middle of the fish slice. Spread some wasabi Take your rice ball and cover the fish slice. Then press gently so that they adhere to each other. Cover the salmon with the rice Invert the sushi so that the filling is above the rice. Press the fish slice carefully on the rice with the index finger and middle finger of the right hand. With the help of your thumb and index finger applied slight pressure on the sides of the sushi, to give it an elongated and regular shape. Finish shaping your sushi until you get a nice shape and so that the rice does not outgrow it. Spill your sushi

Press on the sides

Once finished, place the resulting nigiri in a dish and repeat until the desired number of sushi is obtained. Alternate between salmon nigiri and shrimp nigiri.


Nigiri Sushi


What makes good nigiri?

Nigiri sushi is prepared with high-quality, fresh ingredients and well seasoned sushi rice by an experienced sushi chef. The rice should be sticky and fluffy, and the fish should be fresh with a firm texture and brilliant color. Sushi should be prepared to order and served at the proper temperature. Wasabi, soy sauce, and garnishes can also be used to improve the flavor of the nigiri.

Is nigiri sushi unhealthy?

Whether or not nigiri sushi is unhealthy depends on various factors such as the ingredients used, the portion size, and the frequency of consumption.

Nigiri sushi typically consists of a small piece of fish or seafood served on top of a small amount of sushi rice. This can be a healthy food option as fish is a good source of lean protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and various other nutrients. However, some types of fish used in nigiri sushi may contain higher levels of mercury or other contaminants, which can be harmful if consumed in excess.

Sushi rice used in nigiri sushi is usually seasoned with sugar and vinegar, which may increase its calorie content. Additionally, some nigiri sushi may be served with soy sauce, which is high in sodium. In summary, nigiri sushi can be a healthy food option when made with fresh, high-quality ingredients and consumed in moderation. However, it’s important to be mindful of the type and amount of fish consumed and to be aware of any added sauces or condiments that may increase its calorie or sodium content.

Can you eat nigiri with chopsticks?

Yes, it is common to eat nigiri sushi with chopsticks, although it can also be eaten with your hands. If you choose to use chopsticks, hold the sushi gently with them and dip the fish side into soy sauce, rather than the rice side, as it can absorb too much sauce and fall apart. Be sure to pick up the sushi piece with a firm grip so that it doesn’t fall apart, and try to eat it in one bite if possible.

Do you put wasabi on nigiri?

Traditionally, a small amount of wasabi is already placed on the fish or seafood topping of nigiri sushi before it is served. However, additional wasabi can be added according to personal preference.

What is nigiri vs maki?

Nigiri is a type of sushi consisting of a small ball of sushi rice topped with a slice of fish or other ingredients. Maki is a type of sushi roll made by wrapping sushi rice and ingredients in nori seaweed and slicing it into bite-sized pieces.

Why is nigiri cheaper than sashimi?

Nigiri sushi is typically less expensive than sashimi because it contains a smaller portion of raw fish or seafood. Nigiri sushi consists of a small ball of sushi rice topped with a slice of fish or seafood, while sashimi is a dish made entirely of thinly sliced raw fish or seafood.
Sashimi is usually served in larger portions, and it requires a higher skill level and precision to prepare compared to nigiri sushi. Additionally, because sashimi is made entirely of raw fish or seafood, it requires the use of higher quality, fresher ingredients to ensure its safety for consumption.

How much nigiri pieces can you eat?

The amount of nigiri sushi pieces that you can eat depends on various factors, such as your appetite, dietary needs, and health status. In general, a serving size of sushi typically consists of 6 to 8 pieces. It’s recommended to consume sushi in moderation and be mindful of portion sizes.

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