Maki Sushi Rolls

It’s been way too long since my last post! Seriously, time has been passing in a flash since coming back to London! New projects, new ventures and foremost new cooking classes. Some of you might know already that I’ve signed up for a cake decorating course and for a Japanese cookery class. The latter has totally enchanted me.

I may already know a fair bit about Japanese cuisine and be able to cook a few Japanese dishes, but it’s a whole other ballgame if you’re taught the basics all over again by a Japanese person. Suddenly you discover why a certain thing has to be done this way and not another, you learn about the importance of colours and the keys to beautiful food presentation. On top of all these fascinating tips and tricks, the classes are also just pure fun.

So in my first week of Japanese cookery I learnt how to make proper sushi – or rather maki rolls. The key is to cook the rice the right way so that it’s sticky but not too moist (detailed instructions in the recipe bit). We also discovered how to make Japanese omelette, you know the one that’s layered and quite sweet? It’s really dead simple. In fact, they make their omelette like a thin crêpe that they just roll up, then pour another crêpe and wrap the omelette roll in the new crêpe. You just continue until there is no more omelette mix left.

I filled one of my maki rolls with Japanese omelette, chargrilled peppers, avocado and salmon. The others are stuffed with crab stick, mayonnaise, avocado and chargrilled peppers. These are just suggestions, you can really fill them with anything.

The actual assembly of the maki is pretty straightforward too. The nori (seaweed) leaf needs to lie shiny face down on a sushi matt (a bamboo matt that enables you to roll the sushi), then you just spread the rice evenly over the nori (leaving the top quarter without rice). In the end you assemble your fillings on the lower third of the rice and start rolling with the help of your sushi matt, pressing the roll very tightly. Voila, sushi made easy. Full recipe after the break – follow the rice instructions meticulously so that there’s no disappointment in the end. ★

September 27, 2010