What is wasabi?
Brassicaceae with wasabi gene, perennial plant with origin in Japan. There are two methods to grow wasabi – water grown wasabi and field grown wasabi which are basically the same plant classification. With water grown wasabi, wasabi grows mountainous areas where spring water or clean streams flow. With field grown wasabi, wasabi grows in cool and humid fields. Water grown wasabi grows at a water temperature of 8°C to 18°C and the optimum temperature is 12°C to 13°C. It is desirable to be below 16°C even during the summer, so it is a plant that can only be cultivated in limited places in Japan, as it requires a clear and abundant amount of water.
- Water grown wasabi cultivation
- Field grown wasabi cultivation
In early spring, pretty cross-shaped flowers bloom from wasabi. Just before the flowers bloom, their stems are hand-picked one by one and soaked in soy sauce to make other products.
Selecting Delicious Wasabi
- Good shape
- The stalk should be of a medium thickness, with an even cylindrical shape from the root to the upper part where the stems grow
- Vivid green
- Freshly bright green
- Strong fragrance, pungency
- Natural pungency with a sweet aftertaste and strong fragrance
- The slower the growth rate, the more meaty and delicious the "wasabi", giving it a plump appearance
- Heavy weight
- It feels heavy when taken by hand even if the size is not big
How to grate wasabi
The important thing when grating is how finely to rupture the cells in order to release the aroma and spiciness of the wasabi. Grate the wasabi gently in a slow circular pattern in order to bring out all of the flavor. As it is said to "grate the wasabi with a laugh", you can enjoy the flavor of the wasabi by grating without putting strength with a fine grater like a wasabi grater.
Place the grated wasabi in a small covered container or place it upside down to bring out the spiciness.
The flavor and spiciness of grated wasabi reaches its peak within three to five minutes, and tastes most delicious around 30 minutes after that.
A wasabi grater is the best choice to bring out all of the flavor of wasabi.
KINJIRUSHI wasabi graters are designed using everything we know about wasabi. They are made from fine yet rough natural shark skin and sturdy natural wood that is resistant to water. They come in three sizes, from large and easy to handle professional graters, to economical graters for home use.
How to care the wasabi grater
- After use, rinse the grater with water while scrubbing with a scrubbing brush. Do not leave the grater in water for a long time or wash it with hot water.
- Dry in the shade. Do not use a dryer.
- Use two wasabi graters alternately so they last longer if you grate frequently.
Preservation method for a Delicious Wasabi
Wrap up wasabi with cloth, newspaper or kitchen paper moistened with water so that it does not dry,
and store it in the refrigerator (vegetable compartment), so it can be stored for about 1 to 2 weeks.
Here are some foods that truly bring out the flavor of wasabi.
- Place the wasabi on top of the sashimi. Mixing wasabi in with soy sauce ruins the flavor of the wasabi. Placing wasabi on top of the sashimi brings out the deliciousness of the sashimi and the sweetness of the soy sauce.
- Adjust the amount of wasabi accordingly. The trick to truly enjoying wasabi is to adjust the amount depending on what you are eating. Use slightly less wasabi for lightly flavored white fish, and use plenty for fatty tuna.
- Maintain the true flavor of the soba, broth, and wasabi. Mixing wasabi in with broth ruins the flavor of the wasabi. Instead, place wasabi on the soba and then dip the soba slightly into the broth to enjoy the flavor of each ingredient.
- Eat wasabi after eating soba. Another way to enjoy wasabi with soba is to first eat some soba, and then eat some wasabi. The wasabi acts as a palate cleanser.