Our Sunday night ritual is to fix lunches for the week and pack them in bento boxes. We try to rotate between different lunches so we don’t get burned out.
This week my lovely children stepped in to help me and we made sushi- a family favorite! Follow along as we show you how to party!
First off- ingredients. When we first started making sushi we had to go to a big city to get things, now our local Wal-Mart carries everything.
The most important ingredient is rice. You have to use a short-grain rice so the starches help the grains to stick together. Here is what we get:
To season the rice you will need: rice wine vinegar, salt, and sugar. The vinegar gives the rice a lively sourness, and its Japanese name- sushi- meaning sour!
Then you need fillings. We like: imitation crab (we usually use 1 & 1/2 packs for this recipe), pesto, avacado, and hot mayonnaise. There are lots of different options here. You can experiment with both taste and budget, going as fancy as you want.
You also need to get seaweed sheets to wrap everything in.
Next: equipment! You will need a bamboo sushi rolling mat, a serrated knife and cutting board, a bowl to mix your rice, a pot with a tight-fitting lid, and containers to pack your yummies in!
First, start the rice. It takes time to cook it. Put in your pot: 3 Cups of rice and 4 Cups of water. Stir, then bring to a boil. Once boiling, stir again and turn your stove down as low as it will go. Cover and let cook for 10 minutes (it’s really steaming it). Then turn off the burner and leave covered for another 10 minutes. Do not lift the lid! All the lovely steam will escape instead of making your rice tender!
Afterwards, take the lid off and check the rice. Pick up a few grains from the top. You should be able to chew them and not feel any hardness or crunchiness. If they are a bit crunchy pour in about 1/4 Cup more water, cover and steam on medium heat for 5 more minutes.
When the rice is done it’s time for the party to start! You are ready to make sushi!
Put the rice in a bowl. In a separate cup mix 1 Tablespoon of Salt, 2 Tablespoons of Sugar, and 4 Tablespoons of Rice Vinegar together, then pour this over your rice. Stir this mixture into your rice evenly.
Now, take a sheet of nori (dried seaweed) and lay it on the bamboo mat. We have a bamboo rice paddle that is very effective at putting the rice layer on the nori, but you can use any spoon or your fingers. If things get sticky, rinse them in cold water. The rice layer is a bit tricky at first, but you will get the hang of it!
Then add your toppings!
Use the mat to help you roll up the sushi. It’s hard to explain how but there are lots of videos out there. It helps to tuck in the top and then roll with the mat.
Now it’s cutting and boxing time! A serrated bread knife does a great job. If it starts getting too sticky just rinse it with cold water.
This is where my crew stepped in to help! I am truly thankful for them! A job shared is a job halved! They cut and packed it all as I made the rolls.
What started our love of sushi was “My Neighbor Totoro.” The Fox dub of this amazing Japanese children’s movie has been a family favorite forever. In an effort to eat healthier and enjoy foods from one of our favorite cultures we started making our own sushi.
The cost-effectiveness, health benefits, and the ability of 5 pieces and some yogurt to completely fill a hungry tummy at lunchtime make it a huge win for our family!
I hope this post helps you do some partying soon! With love and sour rice from Japan and Kansas Street to you,