Roasted Seaweed Sheets (called “Nori” and found in Asian grocery stores)
1 cup Rice (plain white is fine, but you could use Sticky rice, jasmine rice or basmati)
1/2 – 1 teaspoon Salt
1 tablespoon Sugar
1/8 cup white vinegar
Bamboo rolling mat – looks like a bunch of bamboo skewers tied together – you NEED this. Found in Asian grocery stores and some supermarkets.
Your choice, some options include:
1). Rinse the rice to remove the excess starch. Put the rice into a saucepan, and fill the pan with water up to about 2 cm above the level of the rice. (They say to put your index finger on top of the rice and fill to the first joint). Bring this to the boil, then cover and simmer gently for 15 mins without stirring it much. Take off the heat and leave for a further 15 minutes with the lid on. In another saucepan mix the sugar, vinegar and salt together and bring to the boil. Pour this over the rice and mix through to coat it all. (this gives the interesting taste to the rice). Allow the rice to cool before using. They say you should fan it to cool it, which apparently makes the rice shiny…I can never be bothered… Or you can cook the rice in a rice cooker.
2). When rice is ready, and cooled, you can assemble the Sushi. Take the bamboo mat and lay it on a board/bench. You can cover this with cling wrap to stop rice falling into the grooves if you wish (I don’t bother).
3). Take your sheet of Seaweed and lay it on the mat, shiny side down. Since it’s not usually square, make the long end face you.
4). Lay a bed of rice along the entire sheet of Seaweed, leaving about 2 cm uncovered at the edge closest to you. You want the rice to be about 1 cm thick. It’s hard to do when the rice is really sticky so I use my hands, and I always end up with gooey fingers.
5). About 1/4 of the way up the sheet, lay a strip of your chosen fillings (see below). Remember that you only need a small strip of filling, because the roll isn’t large.
6). Starting at the top, roll the bamboo mat towards you, so that the seaweed sheet (plus toppings) rolls over and touches the rice. I usually find I have to poke my fingers into the filling when I roll the first bit. You will then need to lift the mat slightly to be able to continue rolling (without rolling the mat up into the roll). Press quite firmly on the mat to make it stick together nicely. That is probably clear as mud, but once you have it all infront of you, it should make sense.
7). You will probably find that the pushing has moved the rice to cover that strip I said not to cover, that’s fine (that’s why I don’t cover it), when you reach the end, press the roll firmly (you can mould it into a rectangle shape or leave it round). Use a bit of water on the overlapping nori to make the roll stick together.
You could put anything in them really… some ideas are as follows…
Toasted sesame seeds:
Makes a yummy sprinkle to put in the filling…. take a frying pan (no oil) and dry-fry the sesame seeds until they go golden brown. Gives a nutty flavour
Tinned tuna (this is already cooked), mixed with a little mayonaise (I actually find Kraft’s Salad Cream gives a nice taste), Avocado, a sprinkle of Sesame seeds.
You could add lettuce, carrot, celery or cucumber too if you wish.
Marinated cooked chicken pieces. (Just cut some very small pieces of chicen (a bit bigger than you want as they shrink when cooked, and either soak them in a teriaki marinade for a few hours, or fry them in a little of the marinade/sauce)
You could add sesame seeds and vegetables if you wish
Crab meat (“Seafood cocktail”), mayonaise, Avocado.
You could add carrot and cucumber if you wish.
Avocado, a sprinkle of Sesame seeds, Celery, Cucumber, Carrot.
You could add some Tofu if you like.
It’s nice to remove the skin from the cucumber, and slice the celery or carrot very finely so that it is not hard to eat.
You can add a thin bead of wasabi for a nice hot burst (or as my friend puts it a “wasabigasm”)
Avocado gives a lovely cheesy/creamy taste and is a great alternative to mayonaise.
Sushi December 12, 2008