Wasabi, a spice unique to Japan with grated roots of plants

Wasabi is a spice unique to Japan that is made by grated the roots of a plant called wasabi.

It has spiciness and bitterness, and has appetite-promoting, antiseptic, and antibacterial effects. Wasabi is used when eating sashimi, sushi, and soba (cold soba), but it is rarely used in other dishes.

Food supermarkets sell pasty wasabi in tubes, but most of them are made from another plant called horseradish.

What is Wasabi and can I eat it?

Materials of Wasabi


Gluten-free Low-gluten Wheat-free Low FODMAPs High FODMAPs
with Beef with Pork with Daily with Egg for Vegetarian
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Wasabi has a pungent spiciness similar to mustard

Wasabi is a plant that grows naturally in valleys and streams in the mountains of Japan, and has been used for 1300 years.

Currently, it is cultivated in a cool place where clean water can be obtained. The spice with grated wasabi root is mainly called “wasabi”, but as will be explained later, wasabi leaves and stems are also used for foods called “wasabi-zuke”.

Wasabi contains ingredients similar to mustard and has a pungent spiciness. In the old days when there was no refrigeration technology, it was also used to preserve food because it has the effect of preventing the growth of bacteria.

Wasabi is always used in sashimi, sushi, and soba (cold soba), but it is rarely used in other dishes. In sashimi and sushi, which eat raw seafood as it is, it is always used to eliminate the smell of seafood and improve its shelf life.

For sashimi, paste-like wasabi is served on a plate, and each person takes it and uses it. When eating sashimi, many people put wasabi in a plate with salty sauce, melt it, and add seafood to it. However, it seems that this way of eating does not allow you to enjoy the original flavor of wasabi.

The recommended way to eat is to put a small amount of wasabi on the sashimi and add soy sauce to it. In addition, white fish should have a small amount of wasabi, and fatty fish should have a large amount of wasabi.

Soba is also one of the dishes that uses wasabi. Eat it with soba soup with wasabi melted. Even with the same cold noodles, we do not use wasabi for udon noodles or somen noodles.

High-quality sushi restaurants and soba restaurants use grated wasabi roots, but in many cases, they use pre-pasted “Neri wasabi”.

Some Neri wasabi is made from only wasabi, but most are made from another plant called horseradish. Neri wasabi made with wasabi is called “hon wasabi” and is distinguished.

Try to eat Wasabi!

How much ?

  • $ 5~9, 100 g of grated wasabi into a paste
  • $ 2~3, 100 g of grated wasabi and horseradish mixture into a paste

Where can I eat Wasabi ?

You can get a wasabi paste in a tube at any food supermarkets.

If you want to experience wasabi at a restaurant, go to a restaurant that offers sashimi or cold soba. At a soba and izakaya restaurant named “Sojibo”, when you order cold soba, wasabi root and a grater will be provided.

You can grate the wasabi root by yourself and eat it with soba. Wasabi is more than 10 cm long, so you don’t use it all. You can take the unused wasabi home with you. There are about 40 “Sojibo” stores nationwide.

Precautions when using Wasabi

For Muslims

Some cheap wasabi paste in tubes sometimes uses ethanol as a raw material.

Japanese writer’s comment for Wasabi

There is a food called wasabizuke.

Chopped wasabi leaves, stems, and roots are mixed with salt, sugar, and mirin, and soaked in sake lees. It is eaten with rice. It has the spiciness peculiar to wasabi and goes well with rice.

It is a specialty of Shizuoka, but you can buy it at the souvenir shops at Tokyo Station or at department stores nationwide.