Monday, July 5, 2010

California Rolls



If there is one thing i have wanted to try making for a long time, it is California Rolls. I not only love how they taste, but they have such a fun look as well. I found everything I needed at a local market, but you can also order the supplies online. They were so fun to make, and even better to eat!


First, we had to make our sticky sushi rice. I have heard from a few different people (including the lady at the check-out counter!) that when cooking the rice, you should add some vinegar and a bit of sugar to obtain the best flavour. I used rice vinegar and regular white sugar and the rice came out amazing!


For the filling, we used 'imitation crab' (which is fake crab, but is actually made from fish, so not a good vegetarian option if that is what you are looking for), cucumbers, avacado, smoked salmon, and toasted sesame seeds. You can buy the sesame seeds already toasted at most grocery stores, but I just throw my sesame seeds in a pan on the stove-top and shake them around until they are a nice golden brown. Once they start to brown, they must be removed from the heat immediately because they will burn very quickly.


After everything was sliced, toasted, and cooked, I set out to start rolling my first California rolls!


In order to prepare my rolling mat, i wrapped it in saran wrap to ensure that pieces of rice didnt get stick in it. This also made it easier to roll everything together.


I folded the Nori (seaweed wrap) in half, and separated it into two pieces. One piece was placed on the rolling mat, and the other was set aside for the next roll. I then took about 1/2 to 2-3 cups of the sushi rice and spread it around on top of the Nori. When spreading the rice, keep a bowl of water nearby to keep wetting your fingers, this will keep the rice from sticking to you instead of the seaweed paper.

After spreading the rice, press down with slight pressure to make ensure that you will get a nice smooth roll. Then flip the rice/Nori so that the Nori side is face up, and place your filling lengthwise along the seaweed. A traditional Califronia roll has crab, avacado, and cucumber in it, but feel free to fill it with anything you like! That is the beauty of it! These are so easy to prepare to suit everyone's tastes.



Then start rolling away from you, this seems to be the easiest method. When the end closest to you makes contact with the rest of the roll (when it starts rolling into itself), apply slight pressure and finish the roll. The remove, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds (optional), and you have a finished roll!





When slicing the roll into individual pieces, keep a cloth nearby to keep wiping down your knife. This will prevent the knife from getting sticky and pulling on the rice as you cut through it.




Aren't they beautiful?


Serve with soya sauce, pickled ginger, and wasabi. So tasty!


Here is the recipe for California Rolls


California Rolls
  • 2 cups sushi rice
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 sheets Nori/Seaweed paper
  • 1 package imitation crab
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 large cucumber
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • soya sauce, to dip rolls into
  • wasabi, also to dip rolls
  • pickled ginger, to serve with rolls
  • rolling mat
  • saran wrap
  1. Place the rice, water, rice vinegar, and sugar into a large pot, and bring to a boil. Then allow rice to simmer for approximately 25 minutes. If your sushi rice has different directions, just follow those
  2. Slice up the cucumber, avocado, and crab into 0.5 - 1 cm wide pieces. Try to maintain a length similar to that of the seaweed sheets.
  3. Fold the Nori pieces in half and separate
  4. Place one piece of Nori lengthwise along the rolling mat (which is wrapped in saran wrap)
  5. Cover the Nori with 1/2 to 1/3 cups of sushi rice, and press down to ensure a solid layer of rice
  6. Flip the rice/nori pairing and place the filling ingredients lengthwise along the paper
  7. Roll away from you, applying slight pressure until roll is complete
  8. Remove from rolling mat and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds
  9. Cut the roll into 2.5 cm wide (about 1 inch) pieces and serve with soya sauce, pickled ginger, and wasabi
And then there is clean-up. sigh. oh well, still totally worth it!

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