You might not think that frozen and defrosted sushi would be any good…but you’d be wrong!

You’ve heard of makizushi (rolled sushi), you’ve heard of nigiri sushi (raw fish on rice), and maybe you’ve even heard of temaki-zushi (sushi rolled up like a seaweed wrap), but have you ever heard of oshizushi?

Oshizushi (literally “pressed sushi”) is nigiri sushi, but pressed into a box or mold. In other words, it’s exceptionally pretty sushi, often sold at a high price not in supermarkets but in department stores, where all the nice food stalls and vendors are. They’re so pretty and tasty, but not something you find as easily as your average sushi bento.

But we found a way to eat however much oshizushi we want, whenever we want it! Online retailer Rejyu specializes in frozen oshizushi that you can keep in your freezer and defrost whenever you feel in the mood.

We ordered the Five-Piece Otameshi Set, which is a sampler that contains one of each of their five flavors (only available until March 31, 2023). It arrived six days after we ordered it, in a very fancy looking box.

Inside, the five flavors–sea trout, amberjack, crab, Himi Beef Sukiyaki (from cows raised in Toyama prefecture), and red shrimp and egg–were neatly arranged in a straight line. It was like a little oshizushi treasure box.

Each type of oshizushi was vacuum sealed separately, so we could defrost one at a time if we so desired. According to Rejyu’s website, there are various ways to defrost them, including letting them sit at room temperature and heating them in the microwave, but the best way to restore the texture of the rice and the fish is to place them in warm water (about 40 degrees Celsius or 104 degrees Fahrenheit) for 20 minutes.

When we tried it, the color of the fish on our oshizushi brightened, and the rice became nice and glossy. Unlike when defrosting frozen sashimi, the fish didn’t get that gooey look that occurs when they lose their water content as they defrost. You would have never guessed they had ever been frozen.

Each and every one tasted just like it’d been bought fresh. For example, we could really taste the accent of konbu kelp and appreciate the texture of carrots and turnips in the amberjack sushi.

The shrimp was sticky and tender, as it should be, and the thick egg omelet was rich with the flavor of dashi broth. They paired perfectly together.

They all tasted like high-quality sushi that was freshly crafted by hand in front of us. We had to wonder if it was because of the defrosting method, but we ate them all, so we couldn’t experiment to find out.

And to think we could keep these on hand to eat whenever we wanted…what a find! As big fans of not just sushi but especially oshizushi, we’ll definitely be keeping some in our freezer. It’d be far better then leaving the house to go to a conveyer belt sushi place every time we wanted sushi. The only problem is if we only order a little, we’ll probably want more, and if we order a lot, we’ll probably eat it all in one sitting…

Well, that’s a problem for the future. In any case, Rejyu’s oshizushi sets are great to splurge on for yourself, to keep on hand for guests, and to give as a gift. Our box of five cost 1,980 yen (US$13.30), but there are a variety of boxes and options to choose from, so you don’t have to limit yourself to the Otameshi Set if you don’t want to. We certainly won’t.

Related: Rejyu
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