San Francisco seafood restaurant KAIYŌ Cow Hollow develops fishless nigiri – vegconomist

KAIYŌ Cow Hollowan upscale seafood restaurant in San Francisco, introduced the innovative fishless nigiri, a type of sushi, using specially compressed and pickled fruits and vegetables.

KAIYŌ, which serves Peruvian-Japanese “Nikkei” cuisine, says the nigiri is part of the restaurant’s effort to go “beyond the standard avocado roll” by creating more appealing plant-based seafood options. .

vegetable fish

To make nigiri, KAIYŌ chef Alex Reccio uses a variety of techniques, some of which take hours, to specially compress vegetables and fruits such as pears, eggplant and tomatoes to look and taste like fish. According to owner John Park, no two ingredients can be prepared the same way. “[There are] not many cookbooks for vegan sushi, so our team is always testing techniques as each vegetable is very different to work with.

Its menu innovations include:

  • Singo Pear Nigiri: Pressed pear, smoked Andean black salt – The pear nigiri is compressed quickly to absorb the flavor quickly, then skinned to give the appearance of fish.
  • Eggplant nigiri: Miso-glazed eggplant, currant purée, umeboshi – A six-hour process, the eggplant is coated in a miso glaze and compressed into a currant puree.
  • Tomato Nigiri: Pressed tomato, tofu, cashew nuts, wasabi cream
  • Nasamurai Scroll: Cucumber, avocado, marinated burdock root, miso-glazed eggplant, candied apple, aji-amarillo, nori, tofu, cashew nut wasabi cream
©KAIYO Cow Hollow

A trendy concept

KAIYŌ also plans to add a mushroom-based nigiri in the near future. Park says her restaurant wants to be part of the growing shift to animal-free protein alternatives, citing a Tastewise report that found plant-based offerings on foodservice menus have increased 1,320% since 2020.

Vegetable sushi rolls
©Quelle: Pixabay

“[T]Demand in San Francisco is diverse for a variety of reasons, including environmental, allergen and/or health,” he comments. “We’re in a city that revolves around healthy eating. Although we are a seafood-focused concept, it is important that we create a presentation to give our customers a sense of inclusion during the KAIYŌ experience, whether they are vegetarians or not.


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