October 15, 2007

Osaka Style Boxed Sushi

Hako Sushi   Hako

Osaka’s boxed style sushi (Hako Sushi, Hakozushi) is a traditional form of sushi unique to the Osaka region. Unlike Tokyo’s Edo style sushi, all the ingredients are either cooked or cured. They are not made with the hands and instead use a square or rectangular shaped sushi box (oshigata) which acts as a mold (right image). The sushi box is first filled with sushi rice, and then thinly cut individually sized ingredients are placed on top so they neatly fill the whole surface of the sushi box. Sometimes an extra layer of ingredients are placed in between the sushi rice as seen in the left image. They are then pressed with the lid, and result in a big block of sushi. The sushi are cut into individual sizes before they are served. The ingredients used in this particular Osaka style sushi are, sea eel, cured red snapper, egg omelet, and poached shrimp. Osaka’s boxed mackerel sushi is made in the same fashion, but with a longer rectangular box. 

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