If you have never made sushi before, it can seem like a daunting task. Those bite-sized, colorful rolls bursting with different flavors can intimidate even the most adventurous of home chefs. However, they are not actually that difficult to make, and require just a few specific ingredients and equipment. Best of all, you can fill them with whatever you like! If you have always wanted to make sushi at home, keep reading for a complete guide to perfect rolls.
Challenges of home sushi making
One of the biggest challenges of making sushi at home is that it can be quite time-consuming. If you are using raw fish, marinating it can take up to several hours. For fish such as mackerel or cod, marinating is essential as it takes away some of the off-putting "fishiness" that such species are known for.
The rice can take quite a while to prepare, as well. For sushi rice to attain its sticky, flavorful state, it must first be soaked in cold water for up to half an hour before being cooked. Then, it must be cooled before using. Indeed, the rice is arguably the hardest part to get right.
Necessary sushi-making equipment
Contrary to popular belief, you do not need a large amount of special equipment. Most items used to make sushi you can find in your own kitchen, such as a pot, a saucepan, cutting board and sharp knife. For most people, the only new addition would be a sushi mat. It is important to have one, though. Some recipes will tell you to substitute a layer of cling wrap, but for a perfectly round, authentic-looking roll, a real sushi mat is imperative.
Other special ingredients include nori, sushi rice and rice vinegar. Sushi rice is rounder than most other varieties and has been specially cultivated over centuries to form the best sushi. Rice vinegar is essential for giving sushi rice its distinctive flavor and cannot be substituted for other types of vinegar. Nori is simply sheets of dried seaweed and may easily be found at most grocery stores.
Smoked salmon roll recipe
This is an easy sushi recipe, not just because it has few ingredients, but because those ingredients do not need much in the way of special preparation and can easily be found in most supermarkets.
- 3/4 cup uncooked rice (sushi rice or white rice)
- 1/8 cup rice vinegar
- 1/2 tbsp. sugar
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 sheets of nori
- 1/4 lb. smoked salmon
- 1 small avocado, sliced
- Rinse rice in cold water until it runs clear, then soak in 1 1/4 cup cold water for 30 minutes.
- Boil in same water for 10 minutes, or until rice has absorbed water.
- At the same time, heat rice vinegar over low heat and stir in salt and sugar until dissolved.
- Immediately scoop rice into a wooden or plastic bowl with a wooden spoon. Metal will damage the rice and may react with the vinegar to produce a sour taste.
- Stir vinegar solution into rice and allow to cool.
- Spread half of rice over one nori sheet, then gently turn over onto rolling mat.
- Arrange smoked salmon on first third of nori sheet.
- Lay avocado on top of salmon
- Starting with the side closest to the salmon, roll the rolling mat away from you, keeping all filling neatly inside, making sure the roll is nice and tight.
- Slice and serve with soy sauce and a dab of wasabi.