Thursday, April 30, 2015

Chirashizushi for All Seasons

As a child, the kaisen-don (海鮮丼) was a familiar sight. My grandmother used to make chirashizushi-don in different forms. Tasty. I wasn't fully allowed raw or marinated fish then, so there would be just one raw slice, and the rest would either be seared or thoroughly blanched. I loved sprinkling furikake over it. As I grew older, the restaurants began offering even more versions of this scattered sushi in a bowl. Like fried rice- a zillion versions out there. There's the Kanto-style where slices of not-so-great quality sashimi are laid atop the rice. There's a winter version known as mushi-zushi with loads of dashi and steamed fish, etc.

The wildly-popular Kansai bara-chirashi (ばらちらし) is different from most chirashi because its ingredients are mixed into the rice rather than placed atop. It's sometimes called gomuku (ばら寿司), indicating five ingredients within. But with modern presentation, chirashi has been conveniently lumped and presented as one category, especially in Singapore, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

I'm quite a creature of habit. For a long time now, at Tatsuya, I'm inclined to order its tasty chirashizushi bowls. Tatsuya's versions aren't slathered with sauces. For some reason, I really dislike seeing strips of omelette or even a tamago in the bowl. As much as I love eggs, I don't want them in the chirashi. Tatsuya takes some effort with the rice, making it an appetizing bowl in the mixed style of Edomae. They still focus on the fish and don't compromise on that quality. If I'm hungry, additional plates of whatever else could be ordered. It's still a very convenient and comfortable meal venue between work meetings and appointments.


Su-Lin said...

Unforgettable! So damn good.

imp said...

I'm quite sure you can assemble two bowls easily too. Meidi-ya sells good boxes of uni and fish. You can flavor that rice any way you want.