Tuesday, December 22, 2009

How To Ruin Your First Sushi Rolls

I recently discovered that I'm into sushi rolls a.k.a. maki.

So like other food I love to eat, I have a habit of trying to make it myself so that I don't have to resort to burning my parents' pockets on food I indulged. Well of course, buying the ingredients is still on them...but at least it's cheaper and we get more out of it. Or, that's how I convinced them.

I'm not here to teach you how to make sushi rolls - I'm an awesome failure. You can just google up the recipe yourself. And here's the tutorial if you're interested.

But if you've been thinking of making 'em and it'd be your first time, I'm here to share with you on what you'll be doing to ruin your virginal sushi rolls. 'Coz they don't fucking tell you that in the tutorials.

First of all, you need short grain rice or Japanese rice. However, it is freakin' expensive. RM39.90 for 5kgs of rice in Giant Supermarket. RM40 worth of the everyday rice we eat could feed a small, low income family for a year. If you feel bad about that, just use the normal long grain rice found in the tub in your kitchen.

You need a big bamboo rolling mat. But if you've done this mistake:

A small one will do:

It's cute and it only costs RM5 (and it comes with an equally cute and tiny wooden rice spatula!). A smaller rolling mat means double the work, and double the mess.

Before you start making your sushis, throw away utter patience and sheer determination out of the window. The less patience and determination you have, the more unrecognizable your sushi will turn out to be.

Like in the Youtube tutorial, you need to place your rice neatly on the seaweed sheets (nori), and just roll 'em up using the bamboo mat. But since you're using normal, long grain rice and a tiny almost nonfunctional bamboo mat, it will fall out of your seaweed wrap immediately, creating a huge white sticky mess.

Now that you have succeeded in making long sloppy rolls, just use any knife to cut it into small rolls. Because if you just use any knife, especially if it's so blunt that you can hand it to a baby to play with, it will not be able to cut through the seaweed causing your fragile long grain rice to be pushed out its seaweed wrap and once again scattering the table causing a huge white sticky mess.

And voila!

First attempt

Second attempt

The sloppiest, meanest and most uneven sushi rolls ever made! You have ruined your first sushi rolls!

And throughout your failed sushi making process, you'll be eating your mistakes as you go, literally, as they are too fug to be presented on a platter. By the time you're done, you'll realise you've eaten a plate of rice, two if you had dinner prior to the mess you were about to embark on.

As you can see in my first attempt, my makis are about two inches long as I couldn't cut through the nori. For my second attempt, I had to use my dad's trusty parang ikan:

And as for attempt number two too,the process was getting on my nerves and well, the rest is history. They still tasted like what they're supposed to taste like though.

I've read somewhere that this maki is actually the hardest of the sushi styles to perfect. You need patience and determination. I don't have that. I've decided I'd just buy those RM2.50 maki in a box at a local supermarket. I'm done slaving in the kitchen till the rice on my fingers dries into white crusts, eating my mistakes along the way.

And I also heard somewhere that making sushi is an art itself. The way you wash the rice, spread the rice, arrange the fillings, roll the sushi and even cutting it into smaller roles is an art. Heck, I'm an artsy person, but more of the 'messy art' kind. Hence the failure to create neat, perfect, even rolls. So if you are a 'neat art' kind of artsy perfectionist with sheer determination and the love for sushi, this is your game.

Now I'm sure the Japanese will be willing to assist me in my harakiri if they see how I botched up their 100 years of perfected art in sushi making.


sheen said...

ok.. r we done here? lets go to sushi king..

DierdreTheseira said...

Never tried sushi before coz I've had this problem with SEAWEED since forever. My lost. Looks yummy though! =D

SaM said...

ah, it wasn't so bad for a 1st attempt. sushi rice cost a bomb, some places use normal rice instead. and they don't use japanese vinegar and mirin. they use the cheapo version of vinegar and and sugar into it. man, i feel like making some too

Amanda Christine Wong said...

sheen: yeah. let's.

Dedz: sadap tu..betul...hehe

Sam: u're an awesome cook/baker, you should try! you might do better than me :D

Daniel Chiam said...

I don't know why... but I don't like sushi as much as I imagine that I would. I love tempura but then it didn't lasted long for me. I like japanese babe but the foods... perhaps once every 3 month

chegu carol said...

i lurve jap food.

eii not bad apa. for a first, that look decent enough to eat. :)

and i use bamboo rolling mat to hang my ear-rings as well. :)

Amanda Christine Wong said...

Daniel Chiam: yeah, jap food can be eaten once in a while, not everyday. and of course u love the babes more :p

Chegu Carol: it does taste decent enough! hehe...useful kan to hang your earrings :D