What do you usually order when you are at a sushi bar? For first-timers, they will normally go for the safe side, ordering California rolls, tamago mentai and other sushi options without raw fish included.
What if you want to try raw fish for the first time but do not want to go too far?
The Alaska sushi roll is a good choice for many beginner sushi eaters. It is a modified version of a California roll. This sushi is especially for those who have just tried California rolls or cucumber rolls but want to try eating raw fish.
What is an Alaska Roll?
The Alaska roll is a type of maki roll that has fillings of salmon, avocado with cream cheese rolled in capelin roe. It is also the modified version of California roll with raw salmon in it.
It is made “inside-out,” meaning that the rice is rolled on the outside of the seaweed. One can simply modify the ingredients of an Alaska roll, but raw salmon and avocado are normally still included.
What is the difference between Temaki and Maki?
Temaki is cone-shaped and is normally made with half a sheet of nori seaweed. A maki or makimono is rolled into a cylinder shape using a full sheet of nori and a makisu bamboo rolling mat.
Unlike temaki that has simple preparing techniques, maki requires spreading the sushi rice, arranging the ingredients, rolling with a mat and cutting into 6 or 8 pieces depending on whether it is a thin or thick roll.
History of an Alaska Roll
The history of sushi dated back centuries ago in Japan, which started from the method of preserving fish. Narezsushi is the original sushi made out of freshwater carp. This dish is still served in some restaurants now.
A chef, Yohei gave transformed this fermentation method in the 1900s by serving the fish with rice. This resulted in 2 vibrant styles of sushi, which is the Kansai-style originating from Osaka and the Edo-style from Tokyo.
Edo style is the basis of the nigrizushi, which is the more popular version of sushi now across the globe. This transformation leads to many other variants of sushi, including temaki which was first recorded between 1980 and 1985.
The California roll or Alaska roll are not from Japan but from Western regions. This is because of the increasing popularity of sushi spreading across the region.
Norwegian salmon was then introduced into the Western world sushi market. This trend started off with a California roll, which contains crab, cucumber and avocado. A wide variety of rolls were then evolved from California roll, which includes Alaska roll and Norway roll.
Types of Alaska Roll
There are various versions of the Alaska roll. Some are deep-fried and some contain crab meat. Children might prefer the deep-fried version compared to the ones with raw fish. Some people use freshly caught king salmon and fresh avocado to refine the taste of an Alaska roll. One thing’s for sure, no matter which version of Alaska roll you try, your tastebuds will be amazed.
Where to find Alaska Roll in Malaysia
Alaska roll can be found in chain sushi restaurants in Malaysia. Some hidden Japanese eateries and stalls in neighbourhoods are sure to have them on the menu too.
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