In 1971, sushi was not widely consumed in North America. In fact, it wasn't popular at all. Chef Hidekazu Tojo, a Japanese chef new to Vancouver, British Columbia, needed to find a way in. So to appeal to western palates, he decided to flip traditional sushi rolls inside-out. By concealing the seaweed on the inside and packing the rolls with ingredients that Canadians were more familiar with—cucumber, cooked crab, and avocado—Tojo invented one of the most famous North American sushi rolls ever: the California roll.
This story is a part of our Flavors series, where we do so much more than play with our food. Come with us as we dive into deliciously different and tastefully off-beat stories in the culinary world.
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