How to Introduce Your Child to Sushi

Children are pretty easy to feed in restaurants, with fare from fish and chips to chicken nuggets to burgers pleasing even the fussiest eaters. But what if you want your child to try something new? What if you're fed up with the standard stodgy options on a kid's menu and would like them to expand their taste buds and try something that is a lot more healthy for them? Sushi is one such food; it is fresh and healthy and can be a great a great option for kids, but unfortunately most are too scared to try it! Read on for some great tips on how to introduce your children to sushi in a sushi restaurant that should hopefully be the start of a lifetime love affair with this Japanese specialty!

Start with miso soup

Before you move on to the sushi, start with some miso soup. Many sushi restaurants offer miso soup as a free part of the meal, and its salty, umami flavour should appeal to most kids. And, as most miso soup comes with seaweed, that nutrient dense green that pleases many children, it is a good introduction to something that features in a lot of sushi dishes! 

Go for a California roll

If your child is on the fussy side, it's best to introduce him or her to sushi with something simple like a California roll. These delicious rolls are usually made with crab meat (either real or imitation), cucumber, and avocado. The type of seaweed used in this roll, nori, is rolled on the inside instead of the outside so it's not obvious that it is there, making it a good choice for a picky eater!

Go raw for more adventurous eaters

Whether your child got on well with California rolls and wants to try something more exciting or you have a child who is feeling adventurous and wants to try raw fish, a great option is a tuna roll (as long as you are comfortable with your child eating raw fish; it is best to wait until the age of 5-6 to introduce this delicacy). Many children like the taste of tuna from a can, and you can entice them to try a tuna roll by explaining that this is the same thing but in its natural state! Most tuna rolls consist only of rice, nori seaweed, and tuna, meaning they are fairly mild on the taste buds; however, the creaminess of the tuna elevates them and makes them delicious and not at all chewy -- your child will barely even realise that he or she is munching on raw fish!

Whatever rolls you go for, make sure you show your child how to intensify the flavour and give the rolls a lovely salty depth by dipping them into soy sauce (though perhaps save the ginger and wasabi for a future visit!) Let your child try and use chopsticks; the novelty should keep them entertained and hopefully mean they are more likely to try -- and hopefully love! -- the sushi. Good luck!