Love the taste of sushi rolls but hate the cost? Try making them yourself at home! These little guys are the perfect combination: they are healthy, light, and the possibilities of fillings are endless. If you haven’t tried sushi yet because you’re hesitant to try raw fish then you’re not alone. Mama Aubrey is going to show you the ropes to break you in to this yummy food sans touching anything raw– in fact, the wraps we made were vegetarian and could easily be adapted to be vegan.
The most important ingredient that you will need is nori. Nori is the black/green stuff that is used to wrap sushi– it’s actually seaweed that is washed, shredded, then dried in molds to form the paper-like substance that binds your rolls together. If you’ve never had it before try it plain, it ain’t too bad and it’s chock full of good stuff.
Next you will need rice. The rice that I used was simply called “sushi rice”, but any short grain rice will do. In fact, you could use any rice since what we’re making isn’t authentic, just make sure it’s nice and sticky. Since my rice was bought specifically for making sushi I just followed the directions on the package, if you are using any other rice then follow those directions using a little more water to ensure you get that stickiness. For me 1/3 cup of dried rice = 1 sushi wrap.
In order to make a quick and healthy meal I leave my rice plain, but traditionally you would season it. As with any recipes, your seasoning will vary by taste, but here’s a common combination to mix with two cups of rice:
- 3 tablespoons white rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
Once your rice is done transfer it into a wooden bowl and mix in your seasonings; metal may react with the vinegar so try to avoid that combo.
So now you’re faced with the filling. I used cucumber, carrots, cream cheese, and mango. (The mango added a pleasant bit of sweetness since my rice was rather plain, I highly recommend giving it a try) I tried to take some pictures to capture the essence of how to roll. If there is demand for it I will switch this over to a video though. Don’t convince yourself that it is difficult, because it’s really very simple. If your roll isn’t tight enough then nothing bad will happen, it will just be a little more difficult to eat. Personally, though, I would be sure to get some practice in before trying to impress with your friends.
Wrap your bamboo mat with plastic wrap. Place your nori on it. Dip your fingers in water, then use your hands to spread the rice in a nice thin layer (constantly dipping your fingers to rewet them, if necessary). Place your fillings across one end. Start at one end and roll your bamboo over, bringing along the nori with it. Use the bamboo to squeeze your roll up nice and snug. Tada! Now take a sharp serrated knife and slice it up (if your knife isn’t sharp enough it will make your results kind of messy. If all else fails just blame it on the knife). Serve it with wasabi, soy sauce, or ginger. All of these can be found at the grocery store (we got ours from Harris Teeter)
Presto! You are now capable of making your own sushi. If you’re still feeling a little hesitant there are a lot of resources online that go into much more detail. Check out the Sushi Encyclopedia if you’re curious about other combinations. What are some of your favorite fillings? Be sure to leave a comment and let me know.