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What Is Shiso?

Learn about the herb shiso and how it's used in making sushi from sushi chef Mamie Nishide in this Howcast food video.


This is the shiso leaf. We use this for many, many dishes, not only the sushi but other things. For the sushi, you can find this shiso as a divider and also inside of the sushi as an ingredient. It's good for fish and good for vegetables. You can mix with fruit - with shiso it's very good. And also the fatty fish like yellow tail or tuna with shiso is also good.

Another way you can use it - julienne in a mixing with a salad. It freshens up the flavors and the people say, 'oh, what is it?' It's very...some kind of refreshing flavor.' So that's the shiso. I also use this one to make a granida. It has a very nice and fresh flavor. And also I make a simple syrup with the shiso for the dessert sauce. You can make anything you want. Another thing I can do is, and I love it, I make the tempura with shiso. It's nice and crunchy and nice and refreshing flavor.

When you buy the shiso you definitely want to keep it in the refrigerator and the stem, the bottom stem, you cut it. Sometimes the vein in the center is too thick, so if you feel it's too thick, then you just cut it and take it out. Otherwise, you can eat the whole thing. Then make sure if you leave it out for a long time it can dry out very quickly, so make sure you have wet towel covering it on the top so it doesn't get dried out. If you're not familiar with the shiso, I really suggest you try it. It's very refreshing and it has very unique flavors. I'm sure you'll like it.

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