Tataki vs Sashimi: Japanese Raw Fish Dishes
The culture of eating raw fish, say in the form of sashimi and sushi, is quite unique to Japan. Now, those traditional Japanese dishes are loved by foodies around the world, so I think many overseas people know quite well what sashimi is, but how about “tataki (たたき)”?
The Difference: Tataki vs Sashimi
Tataki is quite similar to sashimi, but how does the former differ from the latter? Today, for people who haven’t heard of the Japanese raw fish dish yet, let me talk about the difference between the two.
As you know, the ingredients of sashimi are mostly thin slices of fresh raw fish. But thin slices of food other than seafood, such as chicken, horse meat, konnyaku, bamboo shoots, and yuba (tofu skin), can also be the ingredients of sashimi.
Sashimi is a dish where you can enjoy the original taste of ingredients and eaten usually by dipping in soy sauce garnished with wasabi.
Tataki is derived from “Tataki-Kiru (叩き切る)” which is the Japanese word for “chop”. So, tataki is a dish consisting of chopped food, usually made of fresh raw fish such as “Aji (アジ: horse mackerel)”, “Iwashi (イワシ: sardine)”, and “Tobiuo (トビウオ: flying fish)”.
As with sashimi, the chopped fish is eaten with soy sauce but typically comes with chopped green onions, grated ginger, and Ooba green shiso leaves.
Katsuo no Tataki (カツオのたたき)
Actually, in Japanese cuisine, there is one more tataki dish, which is usually made of sliced raw fish or beef whose surface is seared and brown. Thus, the inside of the ingredient remains raw.
The quintessential dish of this type of tataki is “Katsuo no Tataki (カツオのたたき: skipjack tuna’s tataki)”, which is often eaten by dipping in ponzu sauce or soy sauce made tangy with juice from citrus fruits such as Sudachi.
Typical garnishes for Katsuo no Tataki are Ooba, grated ginger, garlic, daikon radish, and chopped green onions.