This Vegetarian Sushi Looks Almost Just Like Tuna

© Adam Weiss / Tomato Sushi

A San Francisco-based chef is making tomato sushi to compete with your tuna fix and you can start pre-ordering it now.

James Corwell, formerly of Napa's Greystone and Le Foret in New Orleans, left restaurant kitchens to make vegetarian sushi full-time, an idea he came up with during a tuna auction at Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market.

Looking out at the thousands and thousands of pounds of Bluefin tuna sold every day, Corwell became incredibly cognizant of the dangers facing one of the world’s most popular sushi ingredients.

According to an assessment done this spring, levels of Bluefin tuna are 96 percent below their historic baseline. So he set out to make a delicious alternative.

The tomato is incredibly high in glutamic acid, which is what gives food its umami flavor. To bring out the acid, Corwell sous vides tomato with tamari, herbs, sugar, salt and rice vinegar until the tomatoes take on an almost meaty texture and flavor. From there it’s just about slicing each one to resemble tuna and getting the pieces out the door.

Right now Tomato Sushi is available on shelves at Rainbow Grocery in San Francisco or you can order it through his full-funded Kickstarter until the campaign ends in three days. After that, you can find it on his website here.

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