Tips for making great Inarizushi from a sushi chef

This Inarizushi (Inari sushi) recipe was devised by a sushi chef of a popular restaurant.

First of all, sushi rice made for Inarizushi can be used for a wide variety of uses including Uramaki and Chirashizushi, so it could be useful to learn. However, the recipe is slightly different than Nigiri sushi. The reason is that in the case of Nigiri sushi, the topping is typically one type of seafood combined with a sushi rice recipe that maximizes the flavor of that seafood. On the other hand, Inarizushi, Uramaki, etc., are filled with optional ingredients put together to enjoy multiple layers of flavors spread in your mouth. The sushi rice is essential to harmonize all the ingredients. Therefore, it is made with more sugar than Nigiri sushi. In addition to toning down the sourness of Vinegar, the sugar’s own richness works to bring out a mellow taste. Kombu is also added to the rice while it is cooking. The aim here is to create a synergy between the Inosinic acid contained in Kombu and the Umami of the other ingredients.

How to make Sushi rice

① Start by making Awasezu (the ingredients are included below). Put the Komezu, Cane sugar and salt in a saucepan and stir over low heat until the cane sugar melts. Then turn off the burner and allow it to cool.

② Next, make the sushi rice. Wash the rice and add a little less water than the measurement on the side of the rice cooker bowl. Add the Kombu and cook it to a consistency that is a bit tougher than usual. Don’t forget to take the Kombu out once the rice is done cooking.

③ Spread the cooked rice in as large a bowl as possible and pour all the Awasezu over it.

④ Use a paper fan to fan the rice while you mix it with a flat rice scoop (shamoji) by cutting through the rice at an angle, making sure not to mash the rice.

Ingredients of Sushi rice



Komezu (rice vinegar):150cc

Cane sugar:4 tbsp and 1 tsp

Salt:2 tsp

Kombu:1 piece about 2 cm x 2 cm

How to make Inarizushi

① Spread the deep-fried tofu on a cutting board and roll it out with a rolling pin until it is completely flat. This helps to loosen the inside of the deep fried tofu so it will open easier. It might seem like a hassle, but it will help you make Inarizushi that looks even better.

② Boil water in a pot, add the deep fried tofu and boil for one minute to remove the oil. Drain it in a colander and let the deep fried tofu cool just enough to touch it before cutting it in half.

③ Combine the Nijiru ingredients in a saucepan and once the sugar has melted, add the cuts of deep fried tofu. Put a lid on the pot and allow to simmer for about five minutes. Turn off the burner and let cool. If you have a wooden or stainless steel drop lid you can use that too, but if not you can use aluminum foil and a flat dish instead.

④ Squeeze the juices out of the cooled deep fried tofu, and open the saccate, being careful not to tear it. Pack the prepared sushi rice and ingredients inside. Pack the sushi rice so that the center of gravity is toward the bottom and the Inari can stand up. If you keep the bottom flat, it won’t topple over. Make sure not to mash the grains while packing the rice in. You can add any ingredients that you like. You can even cut up the ingredients in advance and mix them in with the sushi rice. If you choose not to add additional ingredients and only make it with sushi rice, you can seal the deep fried tofu. Inarizushi filled with ingredients you can see is the open version and is the standard way of making it in places like Singapore and Paris.

Nijiru (broth) ingredients

Bonito stock: 500 cc

Soy sauce: 150 cc

Mirin: 200 cc

Cane sugar: 3 tbsp and 1 tsp

This recipe yields enough Nijiru for three sheets of deep fried tofu that are about 16 x 8 cm. The sushi restaurant recipe calls for boiling a large amount of Nijiru and simmer for a shorter amount of time. However in general home recipes call to boil until the Nijiru evaporates.

Inarizushi is a type of sushi that anyone can make easily. Just take these few tips from a sushi chef and you’ll be making delicious Inarizushi. Why not try it out as an appetizer for your next party? Just for your reference.

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Revision date: January 6, 2022

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How to Make Sushi Rice for chirashi sushi!

The Michelin starred sushi chef taught us this recipe for the sushi rice of chirashi sushi, serving about 2 to 3 adults.

He gave out his hidden recipe, something that only a sushi chef can think of, and something you don’t see in those classic recipes. First, it might be hard to get at places like a supermarket, but he was telling us that using cane sugar (三温糖) and salt from burning seaweed (藻塩) would give great depth of flavor to sushi rice. If you can’t find them, regular sugar and salt for cooking will do. In addition to that, sushi vinegar on the market already contains sugar, salt and more, so make sure to get komezu (rice vinegar).

And if you would like to make it similar to the taste of a sushi restaurant, obtain Japanese short-grain rice, Koshihikari (コシヒカリ). Along with that, water for cooking rice should be Mineral water as well as soft water. Concentrations of dissolved calcium and magnesium in 1000 ml of water are indicated in numbers called “hardness”. By WHO standards, hardness below 120 mg/l is considered soft water. If you can’t find it, try to choose Mineral water with the number as small as possible.



Komezu (rice vinegar):3 tbsp and 2 tsp

Cane sugar:1 tbsp

Salt:1 tsp and 1/2 tsp of which 1/2 tsp should be Salt from burning seaweed (Moshio)

Mineral water:340~350cc


The following are tips about cooking sushi rice.

  1. Place the rice into a bowl and pour Mineral water, and then mix it lightly. Leave it for about 10 minutes and let the rice soak in the water.
  2. Wash the rice like swirling it gently, trying not to damage the surface of each grain of rice.
  3. After the rice is rinsed twice, transfer it into a strainer once and drain until it becomes whitish (about 30 minutes), and then it will be ready to cook.
  4. Cook rice with the amount of water 2 mm under the mark indicated by the rice cooker.
  5. Once the rice is cooked, let it steam for 10 minutes.
  6. While the rice is cooking, prepare awasezu by combining komezu, cane sugar, salt, and salt from burning seaweed and mixing thoroughly.
  7. Spread the rice on handai (飯台) or a tray, and distribute awasezu over shamoji (rice paddle) evenly over the rice.
  8. Use a slashing motion with shamoji and spread out sushi rice all over the tray.
  9. Cooldown the surface of sushi rice by fanning, as a guide, to the temperature you could feel the warmth slightly when you put your hands above the rice.
  10. To cool down the bottom of the sushi rice as well, flip the sushi rice with shamoji.
  11. Once the sushi rice is done, cover it with a damp kitchen towel. Don’t use plastic wrap. If you don’t have a damp kitchen towel, use a damp paper towel.
  12. When you make chirashi sushi, don’t push the sushi rice too hard to squeeze in a container. Try to put it in softly as if letting the air in.
  13. At last, decorate toppings as you like. Use soy sauce on seafood to your liking.

We consider these extra efforts make a big effect on your result. Unique to the sushi chef, please try and follow the recipe as much as you can.

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Revision date: October 29, 2021

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How to make sushi rice for Nigiri sushi by a sushi master

The real way of making sushi rice for Nigiri sushi by a sushi master. There are 4 tips!

In order to bring sushi to life, it is extremely important how sushi rice (shari or vinegared rice) is made. Let me introduce a cooking method, a top grade sushi master uses.

First, wash the rice gently. Leave it to soak for about half an hour and let it fully absorb water. The most important point here is to keep the water level which includes the rice consistent (The first tip).

The rice should be cooked with water with a ratio of 10 to 9. A little less water than the regular rice, so that it is cooked slightly hard. This is the second tip.

While you wait for the rice to cook, make awasezu* by adding salt and sugar in vinegar. Also, set up hangiri (rice-cooling tub) for mixing the rice. Don’t forget to wipe the inside with a wet kitchen towel to prevent the rice from sticking to it.

Once the rice has finished cooking, leave it to steam for about 15 minutes and dump it out into hangiri. Pour awasezu immediately and let it sit for 30 seconds or so. Because the rice absorbs vinegar only while it is hot, managing this process quickly is the third tip.

After letting it sit for 30 seconds, spread the rice out with shamoji (rice spatula) as if cutting it down. Make sure that vinegar goes around using a cutting motion vertically. Additionally, fan the rice using a uchiwa (fan) to remove the moisture of vinegar and mix the rice with a cutting motion horizontally this time. Fanning with uchiwa is not to cool down the rice (Do not put the rice in the fridge to cool it down.), but to dry up the excess moisture of vinegar. Moving both hands as you consider it is the fourth tip.

After the rice is vinegared evenly, assemble it in one place and cover it with a damp kitchen towel. In about an hour, it is ready when sushi rice is settled. (Body temperature) Even in a hurry, if you don’t give at least 30 minutes, it won’t help the taste of course, and also won’t make it easy to form the rice for sushi. If you rush at the end, all the delicate attention up to this will be in vain.

*A professional recipe for awasezu is as follows. This is a recipe for short grain rice species such as Koshihikari and Sasanishiki. Slightly sticky rice like calrose is not suitable for sushi rice.



Water:330 – 340cc

Komezu (Rice vineger):50 – 60cc

Salt:1 tsp – 2 tsp

Sugar:1 tbsp plus 1 tsp – 2 tbsp plus 2 tsp

*If you use Akazu (Red vinegar made from fermented sake lees), add almost no sugar.

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Revision date: September 15, 2022

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