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Jiro Dreams of Sushi - A Film Preview by Roger Ebert

His restaurant serves only sushi. It has 10 seats at a counter. It is in the basement of a Tokyo high-rise, not far from a subway stop. It has been awarded three stars, the highest possible rating, by the Michelin Guide. David Gelb's "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" is a documentary about a man whose relationship with sushi wavers between love and madness. He is a perfectionist, never satisfied, and if you go to work for him as an apprentice, you will have to spend weeks learning how to squeeze out a towel properly before moving on to learn how to slice a hard-boiled egg.

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How Is Nori Made?

“Nori” is the Japanese name for a group of edible algae that grows naturally on rocks in shallow areas of cold-water oceans. In English, this type of seaweed is called laver, and it is collected and eaten in some coastal parts of the British Isles. (In Wales, you can still get breakfasts featuring laver bread.) But most English-speakers know this seaweed first and foremost because of sushi, and they are much more likely to understand “nori” than “laver.”

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Flavor Ammo

Lately it seems as if a chef can’t open a restaurant without professing an undying allegiance to local produce, foraged ingredients, and farm-to-table everything. But behind closed doors, professional kitchens use all sorts of flavor-enhancing ingredients that are more likely to have come from a factory than a local farm.

Kewpie mayonnaise, the Japanese mayo with a baby on the bottle, which you’ve probably seen in Asian markets, is umami incarnate. It’s no wonder chefs love the stuff. In addition to being a satisfyingly rich, slightly sweet version of the world’s greatest and most versatile sauce, Kewpie gets a serious boost thanks to its kind-of-secret ingredient: Monosodium glutamate. This stuff makes everything taste better.

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How to Throw a Summer Sushi Party

Are you tired of the same old backyard barbeque that you attend every summer? Try something new by throwing a sushi party. A Japanese-and-sushi theme is a great way to help you and your friends try new foods and enjoy a different culture—and it will help you give your friends a night they will never forget. Try these tips to throw an exciting sushi party this summer.

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Love Sushi? Here’s How to Eat It Right

Everyone seems to have their own way of eating sushi. Some pile the ginger on each piece of sushi, and others mix the wasabi into their soy sauce. Some sushi eaters will bite each piece in half, or they’ll separate portions of the sushi before eating it.

But unlike many foods, sushi is actually meant to be eaten a certain way, and to deviate from this specific way is considered bad manners in Japan. Making sushi is considered an art, so the sushi chef and the sushi should be treated with respect.

If you’re curious as to how sushi should be eaten, take a look at the following tips.

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6 Tricks to Make Eating Your Sushi Even More Delicious

Many people enjoy watching sushi chefs as they artistically prepare traditional Japanese sushi. Just as there is an art to preparing sushi, there is also an art to eating sushi. In fact, the Japanese culture has enjoyed sushi for hundreds of years and has perfected the art of preparing and eating sushi. However, people today often rush through the experience of eating sushi and miss out on the art.

Here are some tricks you can try to make eating your sushi even more delicious.  

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Be a Safe Sushi Eater! Watch for These Common Allergens

Sushi seems like an adventure—a novelty—especially when you eat it for the first time. However, as fascinating and delicious as this Japanese dish is, it can spell trouble for inexperienced eaters who have food allergies. The chefs cut up the filling and roll it tightly, so you might not see problem ingredients right away. Nor would you know the ingredients if a more experienced friend ordered the sushi for you.

Below, you’ll find a list of sushi ingredients that cause allergic reactions more commonly than others. Watch for these ingredients so your first sushi experience is fun and doesn’t end in the emergency room.

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Cultural Etiquette Tips for Your Japanese Meal

One of the best parts about eating at a Japanese restaurant is the cultural atmosphere. The Japanese culture takes each meal seriously.

In fact, a popular Japanese expression says that Chinese food is meant for the stomach while Japanese for is the eyes. Each chef puts a lot of forethought into the food's taste and appearance. Not only does this attention make a delicious meal, but it also creates a fun, cultural environment.

If you love exploring food and culture, Japanese restaurants are a great option because they centre their atmosphere on their heritage. These traditions include strict table etiquette on how to eat each meal. While not every Japanese restaurant requires guests follow all the etiquette rules, you may enjoy trying out a few.

To make sure you don't break any Japanese etiquette faux pas, try these tips.

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A Tasty History: The Origin of Three Favourite Japanese Foods

When you visit a Japanese restaurant, you expect to see foods like sushi, tempura and teppanyaki on the menu. These foods are much loved in Australia, even though they're very different from common Australian foods.

Many Japanese foods have been around for a long time. In fact, some Japanese foods have been eaten for centuries. Let's take a look at three popular Japanese foods; below you'll discover how they were invented and how they came to Australia.

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Pregnant? You Can Still Eat Sushi!

When you first discovered you were pregnant, you felt elated. You couldn't wait to meet the newest member of your family, and you absolutely had to share the news with others.

But as soon as you made the announcement, family members, friends and neighbours flooded you with well-meaning advice. Some gave you excellent tips, such as, 'Take pre-natal vitamins throughout each trimester'. But others gave you absurd, factually incorrect pointers, such as,

'Don't raise your arms above your head or you'll wrap the umbilical cord around the baby's neck'.

Although you smile and nod with every tip, you can't help but wonder about your most recent piece of advice: 'Don't eat sushi; the mercury levels will poison the baby'. Is it true? Should you worry about eating one of your favourite foods?

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A Beginner's Guide to Sushi Fish

If you've never tried sushi before, the sheer selection of fish types may overwhelm you. You might not know whether you should pick a simple tuna roll or select a brightly coloured dragon roll. You may wonder whether you should stick to classic fish, opt for fully cooked meats (such as eel or crab) or explore various roe combinations.

For simplicity's sake, use the following guide to help you distinguish the most commonly used fish species in sushi. From there, you can decide whether you want a stronger or milder flavour based on your personal preference...read more

Sushi: More than Just a Meal

Sushi. This type of Japanese cuisine has left an imprint on your life. You love to eat various rolls-both raw and cooked. You can't imagine your life without this culinary creation. Lately, however, your family members and best mates try to persuade you to avoid the dish.

You cautiously ask them, 'Why?' After all, you've eaten sushi for years, so you see no reason to sacrifice this food item on a whim. Some people try to tell you that eating raw fish can harm your health. But you've heard otherwise.

Despite common misconceptions, eating raw fish actually provides numerous health benefits. And if you eat sushi, you experience additional advantages. Below, we'll discuss the various health rewards you reap when you consume raw fish-on its own or with other ingredients....read more