A new take on sushi makes beef the star ingredient, allowing for culinary professionals and deli operators to offer fresh refrigerated shoppers and diners a non-fish approach to explore classic Asian cuisine. The concept of “Beefshi” was introduced in February 2018 by Washington, DC-based North American Meat Institute (NAMI), a Beef Checkoff contractor. Prior to the debut, Beefshi was well received by consumers and continues to pique their curiosity.

A consumer survey showed more people (59 percent) found a photograph of a Beefshi platter appealing than those who found a sushi platter appealing (58 percent), according to NAMI research.

“Beef has always been popular among Americans and millennials and those aged 35-44, in particular. They seem to see the appeal of beef prepared in new and interesting ways,” said Janet Riley, former senior vice president of public affairs for NAMI. “When a new and not-yet-tasted recipe scores this well against a familiar food like sushi, it’s clear that Beefshi is positioned to be a hot culinary trend in 2018 and beyond.”

NAMI Vice President of Sustainability Eric Mittenthal said, “Beefshi opens the door for foodservice establishments to offer a greater range of choices for families who might not enjoy seafood. Prepared beef products are delicious, nutritious and convenient favorites that pair very well with other traditional sushi ingredients.”

Developed by a Culinary Institute of America-trained chef, the recipes integrate prepared beef favorites like jerky, corned beef, hot dogs and roast beef into traditional, sushi-style rolls that appeal to millennial consumers. The recipes were created in partnership with state beef councils around the country.

New recipes for 2019 include the Dansk Roll, which is sushi rice, Danish rye, roast beef, fried onions and nori served with remoulade sauce. The Muffarolletta resembles the classic New Orleans sandwich. It is made with beef salami, olives, capers and cheese rolled up with sushi rice. The Triple BLT Mega Roll is roast beef covered in sushi rice, filled with bacon bits, arugula, beefsteak tomato, ground black pepper and bacon-flavored potato chips.

Some of the original recipes include Carolina Sushi, which is shredded fried beef bologna and carrot slivers rolled in rice with a vinegared cabbage leaf in place of nori. The Inside-Out Wisconsin Maki is sushi rice on the outside wrapped around a stick of summer sausage, a sliver of Colby cheese and shaved dill pickles served with brown, spicy mustard. The New York Deli Roll is corned beef rolled with slivers of fresh horseradish and Swiss cheese and enrobed in caraway seeds.