Sushi as we know now is a fairly modern invention dated back to the Edo period of Japan (1827~1829). However, its predecessor has some 1800+ years of history with even earlier roots from somewhere in Southeast Asia. The starting form of sushi in Japan is called nare-zushi, which fish or meat were salted and then fermented with rice. The rice would then be discarded before consumption, because it was only used to provide the lactic acid bacteria required for the fermentation process. The whole process will take 6 months or so before it’s ready and once ready it will last a long time. It’s kind of like the infamous Surströmming! Later, food shortage caused people to start consuming the rice, and it opens up the door to the current forms of sushi.
Came the Edo time, vinegar was introduced to the fish and rice combination and the modern day sushi was born. When this style first arrived, it was originally created as a cheap fast food to cater for the busy streets of Tokyo, and people would eat standing up at a street vendor. However, over time, it has been formalised and specialised.
With the popularisation of Japanese culture and globalisation, sushi has become a worldwide phenomenon. Thanks to its encompassing adaptability, the world has introduced many of the enjoyable twists such as the California roll, Dragon roll, the much loved salmon and avocado combination etc. on the Edomaezushi to make it a truly all round healthy crowd pleaser!