In the modern world, sushi has become a form of fast food that is strongly associated with Japanese cuisine. Originally, sushi was developed in Southeast Asia between the 5th and 3rd centuries BC as a way of preserving raw fish in fermented rice. Gutted and salted fish wrapped in fermented rice was stored for months without spoiling. The practice spread to South China before being introduced to Japan around the 8th century. The early form of sushi became an important source of protein for the Japanese. In those days, sushi formed an integral part of celebrations during feast days and festivals when it was copiously consumed.
Per definition, the word teriyaki means, “a Japanese dish of meat or fish that is grilled or broiled after being soaked in a seasoned soy sauce marinade”. Although the origin of teriyaki used as a sauce cannot be traced back to Japan, there’s plenty of Japanese influence. As Japanese immigrants settled in Hawaii in the 1960s, they brought their culture and traditions with them. Incorporating their cooking techniques and flavors was just one of the ways the Japanese made their mark on the island. For many years, Hawaii was known for growing fresh pineapples, so it makes sense that the original recipe included pineapple juice! Mix the juice of this exceptionally sweet fruit with brown sugar with soy sauce and you’ll get a tasty teriyaki marinade for preparing a myriad of dishes. Today, teriyaki is typically prepared with brown sugar, cornstarch, garlic, mirin (rice wine), sake, soy sauce, and more sugar and is used with chicken, beef, and fish. It has slowly gained popularity and has become one of the favorite Asian sauces for Americans.