Hand Rolled Veggie Sushi
Recipe by Jamie Kubota, MS, RD – Chef Instructor in the Department of Nutrition, Food Science & Packaging
Fun to make once you get the hang of it – and so much cheaper than buying sushi out… You can always add in cooked shrimp, crab or egg if you like. If you want to splurge and include raw fish, you’ll need to find sushi-grade fish – but that can be a fun trip to the Japanese market…
Notes: Sushi seasoning can be bought pre-made – it comes in a bottle in the vinegar section at the Asian or Japanese markets – and even some American supermarkets carry it. But you can easily make sushi seasoning as well – simply combine until dissolved 5 parts unseasoned rice vinegar, 3 parts sugar, and 1 part salt (for example, 5 tbsp rice vinegar, 3 tbsp sugar, and 1 tbsp salt). Store any extra seasoning in a jar in your spice cabinet.
You can also make the rice on the stove or in the microwave if you don’t have a rice cooker. The most important thing is the type of rice you use – look for sushi rice – or Calrose rice which is a rice with similar slightly sticky texture perfect for sushi. Regular long-grain rice isn’t the right texture and won’t stick together well for sushi rolling.
Rice & Seasoning for Rice:
- 1-½ cups Calrose rice (or sushi rice)
- 2-¼ cups water
- ½ tsp salt
- 1-½ tablespoons Sushi Seasoning
- ½ cup unseasoned rice wine vinegar
- ½ cup water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ tsp Kosher salt
- Good pinch turmeric
- 1 medium Daikon, cut into thin slices ~ 6-inches in length
- 1 recipe Prepared sushi rice
- 1 recipe Pickled Daikon
- 6 sheets Nori (sushi seaweed)
- 1 cucumber, peeled and seeded, cut into thin slices ~ 6 inches in length
- 1 to 1-½ avocados, peeled, seeded, and cut into slices (~ ¼ medium avocado per sushi roll)
- 1 tablespoon Wasabi Sauce (or mayo mixed with wasabi paste to taste)
- Soy sauce for serving
- Prepare the rice: rinse the rice under cold water for 2-3 minutes until the water runs mostly clear (this removes some of the extra starch. Then place in the rice cooker with the ½ tsp salt and cook per regular rice. When the rice has cooked, remove to a large dish ~ 2-3 inches deep (like a 9×13-inch pan). Sprinkle ½ tbsp of the sushi seasoning over the top and use a spatula to gently toss with the rice, fanning with a folded piece of paper or folder to cool the rice while you are doing so. Repeat with remaining sushi seasoning, gently tossing rice to mix and fanning at the same time. This process seasons and cools the rice simultaneously – looking for just barely warm rice for rolling.
- Prepare the Daikon (this can be done while rice is cooking or up to 3 days ahead of time): Place the daikon on a heat-proof bowl (or into a jar). Meanwhile, in a small saucepot, heat the rice wine vinegar, water, sugar, salt, turmeric, and black pepper. Once boiling, carefully pour over the daikon and allow to sit until mostly cool. Use immediately or refrigerate and enjoy up for up to 2 weeks.
- Prepare remaining ingredients and roll sushi: On a flat surface or cutting board, lay the sushi rolling mat flat with the wood pieces perpendicular to you. Top with a sheet of plastic wrap. Have a small bowl of water handy to keep the rice from sticking to your hands too much. Lay a piece of sushi nori, shiny side down on the center. Spread ~1 cup seasoned rice over the nori, using damp fingertips to spread as evenly as possible, leaving an ~1-inch strip of nori exposed at the top and bottom (without rice). Starting at the bottom closest to you, lay a few slices of the daikon ~ 1 inch up from the bottom edge of rice, followed by cucumber and avocado. Spread a thin layer (~ ½ tsp) wasabi sauce along the rice at the bottom edge closest to you. Once all the filling is in place lift the bottom edge (using the mat and/or plastic wrap) and roll over the filling ingredients. Once you reach the nori that doesn’t have rice, use your fingertip to dab a bit of water along the exposed nori (this helps the roll stick together). Use the plastic wrap or sushi mat to firmly press the roll and tighten. Remove the formed roll to a plate and repeat with remaining rice, nori and the remaining sushi filling ingredients. Once all rolls are made, transfer to a cutting board and carefully slice for serving (8-10 slices per roll). Serve with soy sauce for dipping.
Makes: 6 rolls of sushi (~ 48-60 pieces)