2017-04-01 / Features

Roll With It!

By Bridgette Thurman

Did you know that a sushi chef generally spends about ten years in training in order to perfect his or her craft? Just like anyone else, they have to practice and start at the bottom before they can start making our favorite rolls. It is daunting to even think about making your own sushi when you know how long the professionals spend studying to earn that title, but you should definitely give it a try if you’re curious. Your sushi might start out messy—mine certainly did—but it’s a fun activity and easy to do, so the whole family can get involved!

Ingredients:

• 1 cup of sushi rice (increase as
needed)
• 2 cups of water (if you increase the
rice, you should also increase the
water)
• ½ cup of rice vinegar
• Sushi fillings: fish, veggies, cream
cheese, meats, etc. (you can put just
about anything in or on sushi)
• Nori (sea weed)
• Bamboo rolling mat wrapped in
saran wrap

Directions:

• Rinse your rice thoroughly in cold
water until the water runs clear.
• Put rice and water in a pot or rice
cooker and bring to a boil. Cook for 20-
25 minutes per package instructions.
• Once the rice is done, transfer it into
a nonmetallic bowl (glass is the best
choice) and add in the rice vinegar
so the rice is coated. Let the rice cool

until you can touch it without burning yourself.
• Nori usually comes in full sheets that you’ll want to cut in half.
Lay one half flat on your bamboo mat and gently knead or spread
a generous handful of rice until the nori is completely coated with
rice. The rice will be sticky, so keep a small bowl of water at hand
to dip your fingers in to make it easier.
• Depending on what kind of sushi you want to make, you can
either put the nori on the inside of the roll or the outside. Once
you’ve picked a side, lay it flat again and pick some of the fillings
you prepped earlier. Lay them in the middle of the nori stacked
or flush against each other as necessary, but it shouldn’t be more
than an inch or so thick.
• Take the edge of the mat closest to you and carefully but firmly
begin to roll. Once you’ve got that first tuck done, lift the edge
of the mat up and let the roll...roll a bit using the mat to keep
everything together and press and roll until everything is firmly
formed. (This can be a little confusing, so if you’re still nervous
check out some sushi rolling videos on youtube.com).
• Once you’ve finished rolling and seasoning, take a very sharp
knife and carefully cut the roll in half, then line up both halves
side-by-side and cut into pieces. Make sure to wipe your knife off
between rolls with the blade facing away from you so you don’t
cut yourself.

There are some very complicated sushi rolls out there and by all means, you should definitely trust your local Japanese restaurants if you want the best (and prettiest) sushi rolls; but if you’re just looking for something fun to do that also tastes goods, it’s a blast to create your own as well!

For those who might not like fish, you can also try rolls like these with steak, cream cheese and cucumber. Cook the steak to the temperature you want and follow the same directions above.

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