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Tips on how to make sushi at home?

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Times are tough. I can no longer blow away a hundred bucks at my favorite sushi haunt. Besides, I've always wanted to learn how to make sushi at home to control what goes into it and to have fun while rolling my own maki. When I tried it a few times, I had a hard time spreading the rice thinly on Nori. The result was more like a Godzilla sushi, threatening whomever braved to take a bite with countless calories. I ate it, but my guests demurred, and rightfully so. I would appreciate any tips on the fine points of tackling sushi at home, especially on how to spread the rice thinly. Thanks in advance.

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  1. As Perry M says, water helps immensely, - even one step further, it is imperative.

    If you plan on staying with rolling maki, you'll be fine. It takes a few times to get the hang of it.

    I normally take loose grabbings of the rice, maybe golfball size, and plop them down on the nori, then kinda play connect the dots, pressing each ball out, to cover the portion of the nori sheet that I want to cover. It helps to have a bowl of water handy.

    Also, you really only need enough for one rollover, for rice top edge to meet rice bottom edge, you don't really have to cover the whole sheet - not sure if that might be the issue.

    1. You've got to get the sticky rice right. Too wet and it'll melt the nori. Too dry and it'll rip the nori when you try to spread. Wet fingers are the best spreader. Only cover just over half the nori sheet with rice. Don't over stuff. You do have a maki rolling mat, right? Razor sharp or finely serrated knife to cut the slices.

      1 Reply
      1. re: KiltedCook

        Taking a night school course is one way to learn how to balance ingredients and show you little tips/tricks to minimise handling.

      2. When rolling maki, place a sheet of plastic wrap over the bamboo mat--this will be very helpful in preventing sticking. This is a good site (and you can find many demonstrations on U-Tube.)
        http://www.sushiencyclopedia.com/

        1 Reply
        1. I have had a similar experience with what seems like way too large rolls. I watched the chef at the market today and noticed that she is using 1/2 sheets of Nori.

          That would definitely reduce the mass in my homemade sushi!

          1. The simple answer to your problem is to use half a sheet of nori. That way your sushi roll diameter will be smaller.

            I use a sushi making kit I bought at my local Daiso store for $1.50, best of all no rice spreading. Fill the plastic container with rice halfway (or less), add the filling, then more rice. Press with plastic lid to make the roll shape. The length (7.5") matches a standard nori seaweed sheet width. Carefully place the container upside down (without lid) at the edge of the nori. Press to release the shaped rice+ filling. Then roll until nori wraps entire roll. Cut into slices and enjoy.

            They have several sizes: the larger 2" diameter size makes Futoh Maki type (means "fat" roll) rolls. The smaller 1" diameter size uses only half the nori sheet to roll. They also have mini sushi kits to make 1.5"x 2" rolls. Cut strips of nori to tie the mini roll like a ribbon. Hope this helps!

            1. Practice, practice, practice. Even ugly sushi is delicious.

              1. Always use sushi grade fish and seafood