Portrait : Oki – Sushi lesson with a sushi chef in Osaka – Japan

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Sushi, Maki and japanese style vegetables decoration with Oki from Osaka

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Finding a cooking class in Japan, especially to learn the art of sushi making (nigiri and maki) it’s like working for the NCIS. There are tons of possibilities, mainly cooking schools for tourists. They are good but I’m used to inviting myself into people’s kitchen, therefore it’s not exactly the same…

But this time, I’ve been lucky, and google put me on the direction of Oki, a real sushi chef who took over his dad’s sushi restaurant a while ago and who works in a calm area together with his mum. The restaurant has a perfect size for a private lesson and Oki, who has learned english (and french) directly in canada after graduating from high school, put a lot of enthusiasm and passion when it comes to share his knowledge. He gives cooking lesson from time to time to small groups and he does it super well ! His speciality is vegetables carving and trust me, when he starts, it’s very impressive.

For more information, check his website : here and don’t hesitate to watch the little video, Oki’s work is quite amazing !


Learning how to make sushis

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During the sushi lesson, Oki teaches you the basics : Tamago maki/Gyoku (sort of a rectangular japanese omelet that needs to be rolled), the cooking process of shrimps, the cuting process of neta (pieces of raw fish) and how to make nigiri and maki.

Just to be sure we’re on the same page : The family of little pieces of rice and raw fish is called “sushi”. Those made with a piece of raw fish placed on a ball of rice are called “nigiri” and those rolled in a seaweed leave are called “maki”.

First, shrimps : You need to put them on a skewer in order to give them a straight shape that will stay after cooking

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It will cook for 20 minutes “à l’anglaise” (Boiling water + salt) then, you’ll give them a “salt bath” for 20 more minutes, and a japanese vinegar “bath” for another 20 minutes. And to finish, You cut them into two, lengthwise.


Then, Omelet : Gyoku, follow the expert… and with chopsticks please !

Oki restaurant_Sushi lesson_Cooking_Omelet_Japanese food_Top things to doHere you go… YES, rectangular omelet do exist !


Then you cut neta (pieces of raw fish for the nigiri sushis)

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Then you finally make nigiri sushis (here, shrimp version )


Then you put them on a plate :

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And finally create decorations with carots and/or cucumber :

Oki restaurant_Cooking lesson_Vegetables decoration_japanese style_Learning_Sushi_Osaka_JapanLike Oki said, “it takes at least 20 years to become a real sushi chef”… I therefore let you discover which carving are mine and which are Okis. I promise to do more training at home before starting my own workshops!!!