Updated: April 17, 2018
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Japanese Vinegar, What's So Special?

Generally speaking, vinegar is good for your health. Vinegar is used widely in Japan as an ingredient we can not got without when making Japanese food. By reading this post, you'll get to know how special the Japanese vinegar is.

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Japanese Vinegar

In Japan, vinegar is not just only an ingredient to pickle vegetables.

Depending on what it is made from, there are various kinds of kinds of vinegar. There is even a vinegar that is specifically made for sushi!

Japanese black vinegar is sometimes drunk on its own as a healthy beverage!

Kome-su (Rice Vinegar)

Image http://www3.mizkan.co.jp/sapari/product/group/index.html?id=01004&sid=01
Kome-su can literally be translated as rice vinegar. It has a smooth taste compared to the other kinds of vinegar and sometimes used to add a scent of vinegar to "Shari" (sushi rice).

Kokumotsu-su (Grain Vinegar)

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Kokumotsu-su is a kind of vinegar made from a mixture of grains.(Usually a mixture of rice and barley) Kokumotsu-su is the most popular kind of vinegar used in Japan which means it can be used basically on anything you like!

Sushi-su (Sushi Vinegar)

Image http://www3.mizkan.co.jp/sapari/product/group/index.html?id=02001&sid=02
Sushi-zu is a type of vinegar which is specifically for sushi. The main ingredients are the same as rice vinegar but their ratio is different to make the vinegar perfect for sushi.

Nowadays there is even a product called "dashi-su", a vinegar with some dashi broth mixed beforehand!

At some sushi-restaurant, they change the type of sushi-zu they us depending on their sushi. (Akazu, red vinegar is also a popular kind of sushi-zu which has an amber color.)

Ponzu Vinegar

Image http://www3.mizkan.co.jp/sapari/product/group/index.html?id=05001&sid=05
Unlike the other vinegar listed above, Ponzu vinegar is a type of vinegar which is already flavored. To be honest, ponzu vinegar is completely different from an ordinary vinegar. It is not fermented nor aged.

Typically, what is called ponzu in Japan is just a citrus juice. (A mixture of ponzu and soy sauce is also called "ponzu", which makes it super confusing.)

Ponzu can be used as a seasoning sauce for anything you like. It's often used when Japanese people enjoy hot pot.

Kuro-zu (Black Vinegar)

Kuro-zu, which is simply a black vinegar is often regarded as a healthy food in Japan. Japanese people drink kuro-zu by itself, sometimes cutting it with some water or soda to make a refreshing beverage!

In grocery stores or at a nearby convenience store, kuro-zu drinks are sold in paper packs.

For the ones who do not like the taste of the vinegar, there are fruit-based kuro-zu which are made by pickling some fruits. They are super easy to drink!

Unique Japanese Vinegar Foods!

Namako-su (Pickled Sea Cucumber)

Thinly cutting sea cucumbers and pickling them for few minutes. I know, it sounds disgusting, but trust me, they are delicious! They are usually enjoyed as an appetizer at Izakayas (Japanese style bars).

Mozuku Seaweed

Mozuku is one of those unique Japanese foods you've probably never tried, let alone heard of. It is a kind of seaweed and usually sold in packs with some vinegar. It's extremely healthy, so have a try if you can!
Quite sure I'm a Ramen freak. Almost up to 200ramens in 2017. Not only ramens but also love to eat around and drink around.

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