4 Jul 2012

Sushi Hand Roll / Temaki-zushi 手巻き寿司

Had temaki-zushi 手巻き寿司 or sushi hand rolls last Sunday as I asked my parents to come over for lunch.

Years ago, me and my nihongo course mates went to a national level annual Japanese Speech Contest held at The Japan Club of Kuala Lumpur to give support to a course-mate from next door class on her participation. In a cultural experience session there, a Japanese restaurant chef taught us how to make Temaki. All of the attendees were given a piece of paper (to resemble yaki-nori) and tissue paper (to indicate fillings) to practice the rolling method. That's how I learnt about temaki-zushi. Thanks to JCKL and all the credit to that chef though I can’t reckon his name.

As for sushi rice, I first learnt with a recipe that the rice to cook with konbu soaked water and then mix with boiled sugar-vinegar. My Japanese pal loves to use Sushi no Ko (Tamanoi powdered rice vinegar) for home made sushi rice. I did have a try, but then I shifted to Mizkan Powdered Sushi Mix. Later, I settle myself on Mizkan Sushi Vinegar Seasoning.

Do note that Japanese rice cup, 1 (ごう gou) = 180 ml. For my onigiri: 1 cup of rice : 1 2/3 cup of water. I cook sushi rice dryer. As for the onigiri, I would add-in furikake which contain some seaweed flakes & etc that will absorb some moisture from the rice itself eventually. For sushi rice, as needed to add vinegar liquid later, thus do not require over moisturised rice. So, after vinegar-ed the rice, that would be 'just nice'.

Sushi Rice / Sushi-meshi 鮨飯, the Shari 舎利
to cook the rice:
1 2/3 rice-cup Japanese short-grain rice (300 ml)
2 rice-cup cups water (360 ml)
for seasoning:
1/4 US-cup sushi vinegar seasoning (60 ml) (used Mizkan brand)

other tools:
hangiri (sushi wooden barrel) or a wide-mouth bowl (best use glass, lacquer or plastic), shamoji (flat rice paddle), a hand fan
Serves: 3 ~ 4 pax 

Wash 1 2/3 rice-cup of rice thoroughly 2, 3 times until water runs almost clear. Drain well. Add 2 rice-cup of water. Let soak for half an hour. Switch on the rice cooker. After cooked, let it sits inside the rice cooker 5 minutes extra longer than usual rice cooking time for well settled. Yield about 520 g of cooked rice.

Use a flat rice paddle, transfer the warm rice to a Japanese hangiri or a wide-mouth bowl. Sprinkle round with 1/4 cup (note: U.S. cup here, 60 ml) of sushi vinegar seasoning all over the warm rice evenly. Use the rice paddle side cutting in (as if writing in “Z” letter way) on mixing. Important: do not mash the rice!!

Lastly: fan, fan & fan, to cool quickily. See shining sushi rice is ready. (Need not to refrigerate the sushi rice. Cover with damp cloth if you want.)

x        x        x

Make a temaki platter and roll your own temaki-zushi with your own favourite ingredients and with lots of fun!

Temaki Platter
some suggestions:
15 yaki nori seaweed sheets (half-size)
1 cucumber, cut into sticks
1/2 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, sliced
5 leaves butter lettuce
3 TBsp ebiko (shrimp roe)
5 crab-sticks
tamago-yaki, sliced (2 eggs, 2 TBsp dashi stock, shouyu & pinch of sugar)
4 shiitake mushrooms (soaked & soften, sliced; then simmered with some dashi stock, mirin or sugar, & cooking wine)
mayo-prawn (5 prawns cooked, diced, and mixed with mayonnaise & pinch of salt)
5 slices salmon (sashimi grade)
mayonnaise (Kewpie brand)
shouyu (Japanese light soy sauce)
~ cooking mushrooms

~ to prepare tamagoyaki, see my another post here

Prepare your favourite temaki fillings. Arrange as a platter. Serve.

x        x        x

Rolling temaki into a cone-shape is not as difficult as you may think. 

How to roll a temaki-zushi / sushi hand roll
On one hand, lay nori sheet where the smooth-side facing down.
Moisten the other hand with water, grab & squeeze (a little) an amount of sushi rice on your fingers, and place it on the left of a half-size nori sheet.
Spread by gently pressing out the rice on nori. (note: I normally leave a space about 1 cm from the bottom for easier rolling later).
Place the fillings in the middle on the rice, example here: salmon sashimi, cucumber stick, a tsp of ebiko & a squeeze of mayonnaise.
Now, fold inwards rolling (somewhat tightly) from the left bottom corner up to join about half of the nori (see below pic, to the point of the arrow).
At the same time, meet both left upper corner to the right upper corner (as circled).

Mash 1 or 2 rice on the inner (right bottom) corner and glue it to the cone.

Tadaa. Home made Temaki-zushi!

- left: avocado, tamago-yaki, crab stick, ebiko & mayo temaki
- middle: salmon, cucumber, ebiko & mayo temaki
- right: salmon, Japanese-style simmered mushroom, butter lettuce, ebiko & mayo temaki

My mum especially loved the mushroom. My father ate one hand roll after another, he loved it. My trick on my parents is always adding some mayonnaise. They don't eat sashimi, all salmon were mine! In fact, a can of tuna was ready for making mayo-tuna also but no way we can finish everything. So fulled.

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Preparing temaki platter, your selection, your choice. Do go for items such as sashimi tuna, ikura (salmon roe), scallops, chuka idako (seasoned octopus), unagi kabayaki, takuan (pickled taikon radish) & etc. You can always pick some unconventional ones like hotdogs, fried nuggets, processed cheese, tomato slices & etc. 

And, let your family and/or your guests roll their own temaki-zushi!!  ^O^)/

Here is another suggestion of Temaki-zushi Platter that I made. Even such simple temaki platter, my father also praised, "Very delicious!"

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