I’ve come to the sushi game late in life. When I was in Japan at the tender age of 19, I despised Japanese food and managed to go a full five days in a foreign country without consuming the local cuisine. Really. Now I’ve learned to love it, along with tomatoes and onions.
On my small forays into the wonderful world of sushi, I’ve stayed rather conservative, choosing to purchase veggie or California rolls from the grocery store and avoiding raw fish altogether. Yesterday while at the grocery store, I had the brilliant idea to make my own sushi.
The backbone of sushi is a red seaweed wrapper called nori that comes packaged in flat sheets. Sea vegetables are notoriously healthy and contain almost all the minerals found in the ocean, including iodine, which supports thyroid function. Nori is also high in calcium, folic acid, magnesium, iron, potassium, riboflavin and pantothenic acid. Sea vegetables also contain lignan, a compound which inhibits inflammation.
Sushi can be made with brown or white rice, flavored with vinegar and sugar. I suggest starting with white sushi rice because it’s slightly stickier and easier to manipulate.
1 cup rise, thoroughly rinsed
1 cup water
1/8 cup rice vinegar
1/8 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1. Cook rice in water for 15-20 minutes or until water is completely absorbed.
2. Combine rice vinegar, sugar and salt and microwave for 5-10 seconds, or until the sugar is dissolved.
3. Remove rice from stove and combine with the vinegar/sugar mixture. Cool slightly.
You can use practically anything in sushi, including...
- Sushi-grade raw fish
- Smoked salmon
- Cream cheese
- Shiitake mushroom
- Sesame seeds
Making sushi is best illustrated in pictures (as I have below), but is made infinitely easier with the flexible bamboo mat shown.
Spread the rice thinly over the nori, leaving a an inch or two for uncovered nori at the bottom to seal the sushi roll:
|Spread the rice over the nori|
|Add the filling to the roll|
|Use the bamboo mat to help with the rolling|
|Roll tightly but gently|
|Seal with water|
|All rolled up!|
|Slice and enjoy!|