Eel Sauce

Eel Sauce, also known as Nitsume, is a crowd favorite and it goes well on various types of rolls as well as a marinade for fish and chicken.  In the United States, this sauce is created differently depending on which sushi bar you go to. I will show you how to create a delicious version without actually using any eel!



For this tutorial, you will need:

  • 2/3 cup of Sugar (150 ml)
  • 4 tsp of Dashi (fish soup stock – 60 ml)
  • 1 cup of Shoyu (soy sauce – 250 ml)
  • 1 cup of Mirin (250ml)
  • 1/2 cup of Sake (125ml)
  • 1 Tbsp of Cornstarch (15 ml)
  • 2 Tbsp of Water (30 ml)
  • Medium cooking pot
  • Stove

This recipe will make approximately 1 1/2 cups of sauce (or 375 ml).

As a disclaimer, the traditional recipe for Eel Sauce is very similar, but it doesn’t include a cornstarch slurry.

 

1. Measure and pour the mirin, sugar, dashi, and sake into a pot and put the pot on high heat. Stir until all of the sugar and dashi is dissolved.

 

Eel Sauce 2

 

2. Once boiling, add the soy sauce and bring it to a boil again. Reduce the heat and let the sauce simmer for approximately 15-20 min.

 

Eel Sauce 3

 

3. Now take your cornstarch and water and mix it into a glass. This is called making a cornstarch slurry. The point of a slurry is to thicken food (mostly sauces) without altering the flavor.

 

Slurry

 

4. Once the sauce is boiling again, slowly pour the slurry into the pot, making sure to stir continuously. You should see a slight color change and a rapid increase in the number of bubbles while your sauce is boiling.

 

Eel Sauce 4

 

5. Remove the pot from the heat and allow it to cool. You may need to continue stirring until the sauce stops boiling. You will notice that the sauce has gotten much thicker – this is good!

Once the sauce has cooled, you can pour it into a sauce bottle and enjoy it on your favorite sushi roll.

Eel Sauce 5

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Bryan Sekine with Secrets of Sushi

Bryan Sekine

I’ve been a professional sushi chef since 2008, but my passion is in teaching others. I have taught over 300 people in my live sushi classes and countless others online!

My goal is to teach people how to make sushi at home while educating them about sustainable seafood practices.

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