The Story of the California Roll

April 24, 2018

If there’s one thing Americans are great at in the kitchen, it’s taking other countries’ food and finding ways of making it our own. Pizza, of course, hails from Italy, but you’d be hard pressed to find Americans who dislike our nation’s take on this classic dish. The same goes for sushi. While Japan is the home of sushi, America hasn’t been afraid to put its own spin on it.

And so, the California roll was born. For those new to the experience of a sushi roll in Phoenix, AZ, this is an ideal choice as it doesn’t include raw fish. Instead, it’s avocado, crab (or imitation crab) and cucumber wrapped in rice. But where did it get its start?

The answer may seem obvious…

So, there is one story that the California roll comes from the Golden State—specifically, a restaurant in the Little Tokyo section of Los Angeles. What exactly inspired this combo, though, is the subject of some debate. One chef says that avocado was used as a substitute for bluefish tuna, a fish that’s only caught and served during peak season. The avocado’s fattiness is said to be similar to that of the tuna.

Other chefs said it was a deliberate attempt to make sushi more amenable to the American palate. You could enjoy some of the flavor of sushi even if you found the idea of eating raw fish a bit sketchy.

On the other hand, there’s also a story claiming that the so-called California roll was invented by a chef in Vancouver in the 1970s. He said that because he knew Westerners didn’t eat seaweed, he made the roll “inside out,” hiding the seaweed beneath the rice. He also specifically didn’t include raw fish.

Whatever the case may be, this particular dish became the favorite of many Western sushi eaters. It’s nonthreatening, tasty and not that difficult to make. Now this American spin on Japanese cuisine has made it onto the menus of sushi restaurants across the world. While hardcore sushi fans might see it as not being the real deal, the California roll has become the humble ambassador of Japanese cuisine to many diners.

Hungry yet?

If you’re looking for a fresh, tasty sushi roll near Phoenix, AZ, you’re in the right spot. At PURE Sushi Colony, our loyal regulars stop by for delicious food every day. We’ve got an excellent selection of sushi and other entrees.

The biggest deal for us is using high-quality ingredients. We only use the freshest fish for our sushi because we know it tastes best. And we also use the freshest crab, avocado and cucumber for our legendary California rolls! We also carry plenty of beef and chicken dishes, along with gluten-free options, like our mouth-watering Korean ribs and steaks. As a locally owned and operated business, we’re committed to growing here in the community. Stop by and find out why PURE Sushi Colony is the best place for Asian food in Phoenix. We look forward to serving you soon!

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