We Need to Talk About How the Wasabi You’re Eating is Most Likely Fake

Foreigners who are into Japanese food but haven’t actually been to Japan may want to check this short video that reveals a shocking secret about imported wasabi. While the clip simply explains why real wasabi is quite rare and difficult to find, it also points out one surprising fact in its title: “The Wasabi You Eat Probably Isn’t Wasabi”

5

The video, produced by All Nippon Airways in partnership with video network Great Big Story, explores the delicate art of wasabi cultivation, according to RocketNews24.

1

Filmed in the Hotaka countryside in Nagano Prefecture, the production showed farmers from the Daio Wasabi Farm explaining how to cultivate a plant dubbed as the “hardest to grow”. Its delicate cultivation process makes the plant very expensive and rare to find outside Japan.

Overseas, it is usually substituted with horseradish dyed with green food coloring.

2

One can always visit Japan and buy the Wasabia Japonica plant. To release its flavor, however, requires grinding the plant on a shark-skin grater. Its complex, sweet flavor combined with its unique spicy twist is not hard to miss.

4

The plant also requires 13-18 degrees Celsius (55 – 64 degrees Fahrenheit) spring water, a particular amount of shade and sunlight, and a year-and-a-half in the soil to grow perfectly.

real-wasabi

This means that unless you are in Japan or are provided with authentic Japanese cuisine, it’s highly unlikely you have eaten actual wasabi at all. Many people have actually missed out on the true flavor of the rare plant and have been eating horseradish all along.

Support our Journalism with a Contribution

Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.

Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.

However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.

We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way. Thank you for everyone’s support. We love you all and can’t appreciate you guys enough.

NextShark is a leading source covering Asian American News and Asian News including business, culture, entertainment, politics, tech and lifestyle.

For advertising and inquiries: info@nextshark.com