Tuna sashimi, also called tuna sushi or maguro sashimi, is a popular Japanese dish consisting of fresh, raw tuna sliced into thin pieces and served with rice, vegetables, and sauces. Sashimi highlights the pure, fresh flavor of the fish. This article provides tips on selecting, cutting, and serving tuna sashimi.
Selecting Tuna for Sashimi
For optimal flavor and texture, always use the highest quality, sashimi-grade tuna. Look for tuna steaks or fillets that are deep red in color with white marbling of fat. Popular types of tuna for sashimi include:
- Yellowfin tuna (ahi) – mild, buttery flavor
- Bluefin tuna – rich, fatty texture
- Albacore tuna – mild taste, firm flesh
The tuna should smell fresh, not fishy. Store tuna in the refrigerator until ready to slice.
Cutting Tuna Sashimi
- Use a very sharp, long slicing knife.
- Cut the tuna across the grain into 1⁄4 to 1⁄3 inch thick slices.
- Make even strokes without sawing back and forth.
- Cut the slices into bite-sized pieces about 2 inches long.
- Chill the sliced tuna in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Dive deeper with this piece: How long can tuna sit out unrefrigerated?
Serving Tuna Sashimi
Sashimi is best served simply to appreciate the fresh tuna flavor. Traditional garnishes include:
- Thinly sliced scallions or chives
- Grated fresh ginger
- Wasabi – fresh grated or prepared from paste
- Soy sauce for dipping
- Pickled ginger to cleanse the palate
- Daikon radish sprouts or shredded daikon
|Wasabi||Japanese horseradish, hot and pungent|
|Ginger||Fresh grated or pickled, cleans the palate|
|Soy sauce||For dipping, use small amounts|
|Daikon radish||Shredded or sprouted, garnish|
Eating Tuna Sashimi
Use chopsticks to dip the tuna lightly in soy sauce. Only add a small amount of wasabi directly to the fish. This keeps the wasabi flavor fresh and spicy. Savor the fresh, clean taste of the raw tuna. Drink chilled sake or Japanese beer alongside.
- Use high quality, sashimi-grade tuna
- Cut tuna across the grain into thin slices
- Chill sliced tuna until ready to serve
- Garnish simply with wasabi, ginger, scallions
- Dip lightly in soy sauce mixed with a little wasabi
- Enjoy the fresh, delicate flavor of the raw fish
Tuna sashimi highlights the pure, fresh taste of quality tuna. With its beautiful ruby red color and elegant simplicity, tuna sashimi makes for an impressive yet easy Japanese-inspired appetizer.