As you step into the world of Japanese cuisine, you may encounter an exquisite dish that transcends the boundaries of taste, texture, and tradition: Hamachi Crudo.
This delicately crafted culinary masterpiece elegantly showcases the richness of Japanese culture while harmoniously merging it with Italian flair.
In this article, we dive into the delightful realm of Hamachi Crudo, unraveling the secret behind its unforgettable flavor, exploring its fascinating history, and revealing how this extraordinary dish has captured the hearts of food connoisseurs across the globe. So, strap in and prepare your palate for an adventure that will lead you through the artful dance of Japanese and Italian gastronomy.
Hamachi Crudo History and Curiosity
Hamachi crudo refers to a raw fish dish. It is also called yellowtail or amberjack. The name yellow tail came as a result of its colored fin as well as the yellow stripe that happens to run on its body. In other cases, this name varies according to its stage of life. For example, it is called kanpachi when it is matured, its name is Hamachi when it is just 6 pounds and at 10 pounds, it is referred to as buri.
Hamachi is originally from the Pacific Ocean. It is highly prevalent in Hawaii, Japan, Korea, and the coast of California. When it comes to taste, Hamachi is sweet and buttery. It is oily with dense consistency. Hamachi is very versatile in terms of preparation. You can cook it but you can also eat it in its raw state which is why a lot of sushi restaurants like it.
The word crudo on the other hand simply means raw. It is an Italian word. Eating raw fish in Italy has been a tradition for so many years. It’s part of the fishermen’s history. The hamachi crudo is definitely a marvelous dish, rich in flavor. Hamachi crudo is generally a delicate Japanese dish that’s often taken as an appetizer.
It resembles sashimi. When preparing it, the fish is carefully sliced into thin portions, then dressed in some citrus juice as well as soy sauce. A lot of people like to present it in a more elegant way when the serving time comes. To do this, you can always grab some colorful vegetables, slice them thinly and add.
Also, add some peppers for extra spice and color, some flaky salt, sesame seeds, or other seasonings and you will love the presentation. Although it’s a great appetizer, it can also be served as the main dish. It’s great comfort food and with it, you will not feel bloated at all. Since it is also low in calories, you can freely indulge in some dessert later with ease.
Hamachi crudo can be prepared or eaten in so many ways that including Hamachi Crudo with olives, mint, and olive oil. You could have it with charred eggplant, hamachi crudo marinated with citrus, you could make it spicy, with avocado and so much more. With Hamachi crudo, every single bite you take is definitely worth it.
The raw hamachi crudo as an appetizer is usually so colorful thanks to the well-done garnishes. It is full of flavor but is also delicate. As such, you can count on every bite being tasty and special. Also, with the garnishing, you are allowed to get as creative as you want. Add as many things as you like to see and eat such as peppers, and watermelon radishes, the options are endless and will surely make this Japanese dish better.
Hamachi Crudo Recipe
- 4 ounces sushi-grade yellowtail
- 2 Tablespoons yuzu juice/ lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- ½ serrano pepper (thinly sliced. This is also optional)
- Flaky sea salt
For the garnish
- Sesame seeds
- Red onion (thinly sliced)
- Cilantro leaves
- Start by placing the yellowtail inside your freezer for about 15-30 minutes. This ensures you will have an easier time slicing the fish.
- Proceed to slice and arranging the fish on a plate
- Get the yuzu juice and soy sauce and then drizzle on the fish. After this, sprinkle some lemon zest, sea salt and serrano.
- Garnish as desired using some sesame seeds, cilantro, red onion and cilantro
- Serve immediately you have finished garnishing
It’s that easy to prepare Hamachi crudo. That said, here are some tips that will make this Hamachi crudo even more delicious and presentable. They include:
Slicing this yellow fish into ¼ inch thick size. Ensure that you cut it well straight down. Pull the knife backward towards you as you do this. Avoid doing a sawing motion. Allow the entire knife blade to work for you so that you don’t have to press it down too much. In case you are having trouble cutting straight through the meat, you can keep it in the fridge for about 10 minutes.
This way, it will become firmer and easier to cut straight pieces through. For even better results, sharpen your knife before you start or as you wait for the meat in the freezer. After every few cuts, clean your knife. This will ensure every single slice you make comes out clean and your knife won’t get sticky.
Since fish is one of the most fragile kinds of meat around, you should handle it with care. Ensure you handle it as few times as possible so just slice and then immediately transfer it to a serving plate. You should consider getting yourself frozen fish for crudo preparation. Go mainly for the flash-frozen or blast frozen option preferably.
This means the fish was frozen immediately after being captured at temperatures of below -60 degrees so it’s extra fresh. Besides, with this, you can be sure that all parasites will be killed.
Hamachi Crudo with Yuzu
Yuzu is a type of citrus fruit that is part of the Rutaceae family. It’s a plant from the Eastern region of Asia. According to stories, it was first cultivated in China and is a subspecies of the Mandarin orange as well as the ichang papeda. Yuzu somehow resembles the grapefruit that has an uneven skin, usually either yellow or even green but this depends on just how ripe it is.
This fruit has such a great smell and can be just as large as an ordinary grapefruit. Yuzu is in most cases highly linked to Japan although it is also grown in countries like China and Korea. Its flavor is so unique and when you have it, you will realize that it is somehow reminiscent of a lemon. It also has herbal properties. It is quite costly because of its demand and also the supply.
As mentioned, it is highly used by the Japanese people either domestically or even made into fruit juice. Koreans mostly use yuzu to make preservatives. The fruit is not so common outside the Asian continent. Yuzu can be used to make Hamachi crudo. It adds a nice citrus touch to the dish making it even more flavorful.
When adding it to Hamachi crudo, it is best to ensure you pick the most unblemished fruit with great flavor. You can also use its peel either fresh or dried. There are also variations of yuzu but you can use them all in preparing your Hamachi Crudo as they aren’t too different except in how they are actually grown.
Hamachi Crudo Calories and Nutrition
If you are particularly keen when it comes to calories, Hamachi Crudo in a 3.5 ounce serving will contain 146 calories. This, compared to a number of snacks or even drinks for example sodas is quite a reasonable amount considering these all contain more than 146 calories. It does contain protein of about 23 calories.
As such, it is a great option for those people who prefer to have a diet that’s rich in protein. This protein is useful when it comes to building muscle mass. It is also great for people who are on a strict weight loss journey. It contains other nutrients that are healthy for you such as calcium, iron, vitamin, protein, potassium, sodium and so many more.
As can be seen, Hamachi is a very interesting dish that will allow you to get all creative inside your kitchen. It is very tasty and also easy to prepare. The recipe above in fact needs no cooking so within a few minutes and with the right ingredients, you can have a taste of it.
No need to head off to Japan because you can get everything you need for it in a grocery store near you. In case you find yourself in beautiful Japan, even better because you will get to try hamachi crudo but with yuzu which is a rare fruit in other parts of the world.
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