How To Make Sushi
Add A Sophisticated Touch To Your Party
Imagine inviting your guests over, and the first dish you bring out is a sophisticated selection of sushi, all in the festive colors of the Halloween season. They'll feel like first-class VIP's, and you'll be the talk of the office. The best part is, you can easily make this Halloween-Inspired Sushi at home and spend less than half of what you would for pre-made sushi at a gourmet market. This lens offers a step-by-step tutorial for beginners, and enough variations on ingredients for veteran sushi makers to get creative.
All you need is a bamboo mat to get started. Then pick up a few of the basic ingredients, most of which can be found at your local grocery store.
For the Beginner: The California Roll
EASY CRAB, AVACADO, AND CUCUMBER SUSHI
1 Package Mock Crab Leg
1 Ripe Avacado
1 Cucumber, Sliced into thin strips
Nori (Seaweed Sheet)
Place Nori on bamboo mat.
Spread about 1/2 cup of rice on the sheet of nori, leaving about an inch of uncovered nori at one side. Do not pack the rice, rolling will take care of that.
The rice should be less than a 1/4 inch thick -- you should be able to see nori through the rice.
THE BIGGEST MISTAKE FOR ALL BEGINNERS IS USING TOO MUCH RICE
Put avocado slices on top of the rice first, one slice thick, near the edge of the rice, opposite the uncovered nori.
Place mock crab meat lengthwise, end to end on top of the avocado.
Add several strips of cucumber next to the crab and on top of the avocado.
Slowly fold the mat over, tucking the end of the nori to start a roll.
Keep lifting up the mat as you go.
Lessen the pressure to straighten out the roll, if needed. Then continue rolling with medium pressure.
Make sure the bottom is sealed.
Cut roll in half.
Then cut each half into three even pieces.
Each ROll makes 6 pieces.
What You Will Need - a Bamboo Mat
A good bamboo mat that rolls well is the first item you will need to get you started. There are several on the market, and they are not expensive. And bamboo is a great "green" resource. It grows quickly and replensishes easily. I've found mats at Ingles, Kroger, and other stores for about $9.00 up to $10.00, but I found this one at Helen Chen's Asian Kitchen for less than $4.00
Rice - in Several Festive Colors
The base of your sushi is rice. You can really change the look of traditional sushi by using colored rice. This can be harder to find, but it really makes a difference. You can, of course, use white rice. But if you dare to be different, you can find differently colored rice at specialty stores or online in hues of green and black.
Seaweed sheets hold it all together. Seaweed typically comes in packages of 8 or 10 sheets. Depending on where you shop, you can spend $3.00 per package up to $8.00 per package. I found packs of 10 at Kroger in the international section for just under $3.00. Again, seaweed is not the easiest thing to find, so purchasing online may be the way to go. And if you make it as often as I do, you want to have more than 8 sheets around the house. I like to use the Nori from Mikoshi Trading because for $10.00, I get four times more for the same price. It's enough to last me several months. Seaweed Sheets keep well, so I like to be stocked up.
Not every grocer carries specialty items like pickled ginger, but a Sushi Dinner is not complete without it. Welpac makes a great, affordable Sushi Ginger. Ordered online, it can be at your door in no time.
How to Make Tuna and Cucumber Sushi
1 lb. Tuna Steak
Cook Rice according to instructions. Let it Cool.
Meanwhile, slice tuna in long thin strips, not more than 1/4 inch thick.
Slice a cucumber, LENGTHWISE. Then, Cut into strips, no more than 1/4 inch wide.
Take one sheet of NORI (Seaweed sheet) and place it shiny side up on top of bamboo mat.
Press firmly-- but do not mush--- rice onto sheet, about 1/4 inch thick, but no thicker, or the roll will be overstuffed.
At ONE long end, leave approximately 1/2 inch of seaweed. Be sure to pat rice on sides of seaweed to the very edges on the other 3 sides.
Layer a strip of Tuna, lengthwise in middle of rice and seaweed sheet. Add 2 long strips of cucumber next to Tuna. Starting at bottom end, roll sushi toward the 1/2 inch edge. Roll Tight, sealing edge.
Cut roll in half.
Cut each 1/2 into three equal pieces.
Serve with Soy Sauce, Wasabi, and Pickled Ginger.
Would You Try It?
Do You Like To Eat Sushi?
Mock Crab Leg and Carrot Sushi with Black Pearl Rice
Black Pearl Rice
Mock Crab Legs
Finely Shredded Carrot
Nori Sheet (Seaweed Sheet)
Cook rice according to instructions.Cool.
Meanwhile, Shred Carrot.
Lay Nori Sheet on bamboo mat, shiny side up.
Place cooled rice on Nori, no more than 1/4 inch think, being sure to get rice all the way to edges. On the top edge, lengthwise, you want to leave 1/2 inch of seaweed with no rice on it.
Lay a crab leg, lengthwise, across the Nori.
Next to the crab leg, add shredded carrot.
Carefully roll sushi in the bamboo mat, and make sure the end seals.
Cut sushi roll in half.
Cut each half into three pieces.
Makes 6 pieces of sushi.
Serve Your Sushi In Style - Keep Your Guests "Ooohing and Ahhhhing" When You Serve Them.
If you're hosting a large group, there are some really economical ways to give them the whole experience. Providing chopsticks for everyone makes your guests feel special and taken care of.
I have lost some chopsticks at parties, so I've found some good alternatives with big groups.
I especially like to use the disposable chopsticks. You can order 40 pair for next to nothing, and your guests can even take them home as a souvenir of your party.
Video Description of How to Make Sushi
If you need some visuals, this is a terrific video that shows how to roll sushi like a pro.
Vegetable Sushi with Brown Rice
THESE AUTUMN COLORS LOOK PERFECT TOGETHER
Brown Sushi Rice
1 Carrot, cut into thin matchsticks
1 Cucumber cut into thin strips, about 1/4 inch wide
1 Ripe Avocado, thinly sliced
3 Radishes, cut into thin match sticks (Optional)
2 Teasoons Rice Vinegar
1 Teaspoon Soy Sauce
Nori (Sea Weed Sheet.)
Cook Rice according to package directions.
Stir together vinegar and soy sauce. Add vinegar mixture to cooled rice and mix well.
Place Nori on Bamboo Mat, shiny side up. Place rice on Nori, going to all edges, leaving 1/2 inch at the top edge free of rice.
At bottom edge, place strips of avacado, cucumber, carrots, and radishes (if radishes are desired.)
Roll Nori with bamboo mat, and make sure ends are sealed.
Cut Sushi roll in half.
Cut each half into three pieces.
Will You Make Sushi?
Now That You've Seen Some Ideas, WIll You Try Making It At Home?
Presentation Is Everything
Why go through all the work to make a beautiful dish, and then serve it on ordinary dishes? Making, Serving, and Eating Sushi is an Art Form. Impress your guests when you serve their Sushi on an actual Sushi Plate, that shows off the beauty of the foot. (Not to mention showing off all your hard work.)
For serving a large group, these sushi plate will hold up to several sushi rolls, allowing you to show off several different kinds of sushi that you've made, and makes it easy for guests to choose the one they want.
You Know the Basics, Now Be Creative
Once you get the knack of rolling sushi, you can create all kinds of variations, using jade pearl rice (green), white rice, brown rice, black rice, and all kinds of fall and Halloween inspired colors. Add anything fresh, and roll it up and serve. Remember to always have pickled ginger, wasabi, and soy sauce on hand.
I'd love to hear from you.