Hello, everybody! We were craving fresh sushi and since we live in the middle of verifiable nowhere, we have to make it ourselves. I decided to take some pictures in case anybody has enjoyed sushi but thought it was hard to make. It's really, really not. Plus, it keeps in the fridge for several days, and the ingredients are great for families on a budget. I first made sushi in college and my kids have grown up making sushi rolls at home. We've experimented with a few different kinds, but we always come back to California rolls.
We like the fresh ingredients. No raw tuna, here! Or maybe it's just easier to find the various veggies and such.
So, let's start!
A pack of sushinori seaweed sheets, rice vinegar, and good quality rice. All of these can be found in your local grocery store. (I'm positive. Really. If WE have them, YOU have them. Unless you're a one stop-light town. We're a two stop-light town and we've got seaweed, and it's certainly not because of our large Asian population.)
Bamboo mats are in most kitchen stores an Walmart and on Amazon. Usually about $6. You don't really need one. You can use plastic wrap or foil, but they do work better.
We usually use fake crab (because the kids like it better and it's already in the package) but crabs are in season on our coast and this fresh beauty was only $5.99! My son loves to clean them so I let him take care of that part. Maybe I'll post a tutorial on crab cleaning? Hmmmm...
One cucumber, several carrots, fake crab, and avocado. Cut into slices.
Real crab. Mmmmm....
Mix 12 TBS rice veingar, 9 TBS sugar, and 3 TBS salt in a pot and warm (stirring frequently) until everything is dissolved.Boil the rice according to the directions. Pour the liquid over the HOT cooked rice. This is what gives sushi rice that delicious sweet/sour flavor.
Here's the tricky part. You want each grain coated with the mixture, and how this is achieved is to mix the rice in a folding motion, while fanning with a stiff paper (or a school notebook, as is the case here). You can do it yourself, but if you're not so coordinated, it's always better to have one person fan and the other fold. After about five minutes of gentle folding, the vinegar mix should be absorbed into the rice.
Lay the nori on the mat. Inhale deeply. MMMMM...
So, first step is to cut your nori sheets in half. They should snap apart easily if they're fresh out of the package.Here's the thing... California roll has the seaweed on the INSIDE. Pat rice in a thin layer onto the seaweed sheet. Have a small bowl of water nearby to dip your fingers in or you'll end up with rice EVERYWHERE.
Roll gently and slowly. It's not hard and with practice, it really takes about 2 minutes to assemble. But I'm uncoordinated so I go slowly.
They can be wrapped in plastic and put in the fridge at this point. They'll keep for a day or two (probably more) and they're great for bringing to a party, assembling in the kitchen and bringing them out. Lots easier than hauling around platters of sushi.
And just in case anyone wants to make the rice on the inside, you can do it really easily an skip thats the of the extra foil and the flipping over.
The cutting works the same way, but if the nori is on the outside, it's easier to cut if you dip the knife in very hot water before each cut.
Here is a traditional roll (same ingredients, but seaweed on the outside).
California roll! (But I ran out of sesame seeds, so just imagine a coating of sesame seeds on the outside.) Dip in soy sauce and wasabi for best results!
OK, that's all for now. I caught a bad cold right after our stomach virus so I am DRAGGING myself around. But I know it's all temporary and fleeting and soon we'll all be right as rain. :) Take care, have some sushi, and see you all next time!