Maki is the type of sushi we eat most commonly in North America. It’s the one where the seaweed or nori is on the outside and the rice and fish/veggies are on the inside, like this:
There is maki all over Japan, but it seems more like it is the convenience version of sushi, making it easier to take on the go with you. Japan’s fast food! I found Nigri sushi to be much more common when you go to sushi restaurants:
and sashimi is plentiful in many restaurants as well.
I decided to start with Maki because I think they will be the easiest to make anywhere in the world regardless of your access to sushi grade fish! Plus Sashimi doesn’t really involve a lot of cooking on my part 🙂
I made three different types of maki and I rolled them three different ways, giving how many permutations? Anyone, anyone, buhler… (pssssst…it’s 9)
So on to general maki making…. 🙂
STEP 1.) Gather the ingredients: Sushi rice, rice wine vinegar, nori (seaweed) sheets, rolling mat, a bowl and whatever you want in the middle.
STEP 2.) Make the rice.
Making sushi rice in a rice cooker is easy and comes out perfect everytime. If you don’t have a rice maker that’s fine, you can make it on the stove top as well. Here is a good video on the best way to do that: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abq9YngGKno
Either way while the rice is cooking, you have plenty of time to prepare the rest of your dish.
STEP 3.) Slice whatever you are placing inside your sushi into long thin strips. Try to cut the veggies proportional to the width of the nori (seaweed). I didn’t and it turned out fine, but I think they would look nicer if I had. Here I am using cucumber:
STEP 4.) When the rice is done cooking, transfer it to a bowl to speed it’s cooling. Add the rice wine vinegar and mix gently, allowing the rice to cool for about 5 mins. Place your nori paper on the bamboo rolling mat. Place the nori so that its perforations are running vertical. Once cool, scoop a handful of the rice onto the nori paper and spread it all over the nori, leaving the last inch of nori at the top free. Pressing the rice down helps the rolling later.
Layer on your veggie or fish of choice at the bottom. Here I’m using the last of my pickled veggies from before!
STEP 5.) Roll!
Use the mat to apply pressure as you roll. I found it most helpful to roll almost all the way with some pressure, and then apply the most pressure once it’s rolled. Otherwise I was getting a lot of the fillings squishing out!
STEP 6.) Cut!
Remove the sushi roll from the bamboo mat and use a wet knife to cut your roll into bite size chunks!
I didn’t write out any measurements because the first time I made it, I just kinda winged it. Basically I made sushi rolls until I ran out of either rice, seaweed or filler. My measurements varied depending on how much sushi we wanted to eat… because it won’t stay tasty for more that 24 hours. However I don’t think I ever ran into the problem of having to much sushi lying around, it got eaten pretty fast 🙂
I do have some general measurements below for you, this made about 24 pieces:
I used 3 cups uncooked rice
6 nori sheets
one small cucumber, one avocado, 3 T. Japanese pickles
2-3 T. rice wine vinegar