The sardine is an economical fish, as most shiny fishes are, since they are abundant. They all tend to have a strong smell when they are cooked. However, when they are available for raw consumption such as sushi or sashimi, it is a totally different story. The shiny fishes are notorious for spoiling quickly, and extra work is needed for them to be freshly available to customers. Although small in size, sardines require very large aquariums to be kept alive, so fish markets usually do this job of keeping them alive. It is then delivered to the sushi restaurants right before they open for business, so the sardines are fresh as possible.
Sardine sushi is very oily, and rich in flavor. The flesh is medium firm, and has no fishy smell when it is fresh. There are many tiny bones that run across the flesh, but they can be consumed since they are soft. Grated ginger and sliced scallions are used with sardine sushi to bring out the sweet aromas of the sardine by neutralizing the oils. Sardine sushi is a delicacy made with a low grade fish, but is considered one of the most healthiest sushi for its high omega3 content.
Popular style: Nigiri
Popular condiments: Shoga, Negi
Category: Shiny Fish(Hikarimono)