Tuesday, January 4, 2011

California Rolls

Since I live in a very small town at least 1000 miles from an ocean, there is no place around here to buy good sushi.  I have decided to make it myself.  This is my second time making California rolls on my own, which is why they are a little messy still, but I'm getting the hang of it. 
 Before rolling:
If you want to try this yourself, here are the recipes I used.  Youtube also has some great tutorials.  If you can't find the ingredients locally, I have ordered them from http://www.asianfoodgrocer.com/ before, and they were great.  This time, I stocked up on nori when I was visiting family in another state.  They sell it at Walmart in some areas, just not in mine.

Sushi Rice (enough for 6-7 rolls)

2 Cups short grain white rice
2 1/4 cups water
½ cup white rice vinegar
2 tsp salt
¼ cup white sugar

Rinse rice several times in water until the water is clear.  Place rice in 2 qt pot and fill with water to 1 inch above the rice.  Let soak for 30 minutes.  Rinse rice again.  Place rinsed, drained rice back in pot and add 2 ¼ cups cold water.  Cook covered until boiling on high heat.  Turn down to lowest heat setting.  Let rice simmer for 20 minutes and don’t lift the lid.  If there is still water, put the lid back on a cook for a few minutes.

While rice is cooking, place rice vinegar, salt, and sugar in small pot and bring to a boil on med high heat, stirring until salt and sugar dissolve.  Remove from heat.

Once rice has absorbed all water, remove from heat and let sit for 15 minutes.  Pour rice in a large non-metal bowl and spread it out with a wooden spoon.  Don’t scrape any dried rice out of the bottom of the pot.  Pour vinegar mixture over a spoon onto the rice and toss until cool.

California Roll (makes 2-3 rolls)

Plastic wrap
Bamboo mat
½ cucumber
1 ripe avocado
¼ lb crab or imitation crab
2 cups sushi rice
2 - ½ sheets nori sushi wraps
sesame seeds

Cover bamboo mat in plastic wrap.  Peel cucumber and scoop out seeds with a spoon.  Slice cucumber into long thin strips.  Peel avocado and cut into thin slices.  Squeeze lemon juice on avocado if desired to keep from browning.

Place nori shiny side down on the bamboo mat.  With moistened hands, grab 1 cup of sushi rice and spread evenly on the nori, leaving a ½ inch of the nori uncovered on one of the long sides.  You should be able to see the nori through the rice.  Don’t make it too thick.  Sprinkle with sesame seeds.  Lay down the bamboo mat and place the nori rice side down on mat.  Add strip of crab, avocado, and cucumber longwise in the middle of the nori.  Roll sushi, rice free edge first.  Use mat to press and tighten roll.  Slice roll and serve with soy sauce and wasabi.

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