Souzai Lands In Bellevue

One of the latest trends originating in the Kyoto region of Japan, souzai is a collection of side dishes that can be served hot or cold. Chef Juro Oki brought his expertise to I Love Sushi in Bellevue, where they now offer a deli case full of souzai-style salads available to go.

Souzai Chef Juro Oki - 425 Magazine

Souzai Chef Juro Oki

“Souzai is not just for convenience, but based on goodness of ingredients to your body,” says chef Oki through an interpreter.

Souzai contains many health-promoting ingredients, like antioxidants and digestive enzymes. Not only does it deliver a nutrient-packed punch, but it also manages to maintain the delicate and detailed style of Japanese dishes.

On the savory-umami side are dishes like the hijiki mineral salad — a rainbow of beans offset by black threads of hijiki, a type of seaweed, tossed in a soy-sesame oil dressing; steamed chicken salad with shio koji — tender juicy shredded chicken breast tossed with green onions, Chinese zasai pickles, sesame oil, and fermented seasonings; and Wagyu kimpira salad — thinly sliced burdock root with American Wagyu beef. Sweeter dishes include Yellow Power Salad — a mound of sunny-colored fruits like pineapple, oranges, mango, papaya, and passion fruit tossed with chia seeds, lemon, turmeric, and honey — or the shrimp and broccoli salad with sweet mayo dressing.

There are also protein-based dishes like kurosu kara-age — breaded, fried chicken thighs with colorful bell pepper slices; onions; and a rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, soy, and sugar sauce. Curry-spiced calamari rings and yuzu-flavored squid and cucumber salad offer seafood protein options.

is a 425 contributor.
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