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DIY SUSHI

I’ve heard about it.

I’ve seen it done in the Hollywood box office movies.

I know a few people who have tried it but in all honesty, I never expected to be one of them.

However on our recent trip to Orange Beach, Alabama, I Angi Abercrombie, Mr. Chicken Fry and the teen queen made and rolled our very own sushi!

It’s now that I have a bigger picture understanding of why a little piece of fish wrapped up in seaweed and rice is so expensive. Ca-Hing!

Because, y’all, it’s not as easy as it looks!

While in Orange Beach, a sweet group of girls made the bold decision to host a fun Asian fusion party.  Fortunately they had done all of the heavy lifting by shopping for all necessary ingredients and goods.

By the time I strolled in, I felt bad because I realized there was much to be done.  We all perked up and formed a major sushi assembly line. We had a first class DIY (do it yourself) SUSHI set up. It’s valuable to note because I don’t want to mislead anyone, but making sushi is a lot of upfront messy work but with the right crowd it’s a bleeping ball.

What you will need:

FRIENDS

In my humble, low lack cooking skilled opinion, this is an ALL-SKATE kind of experience.  Call in all of your closest couple friends or call over your girl gang but whatever you do, don’t roll alone.  It’s much more pleasurable to prep and roll with your closests homies.  If you’re looking for a family friendly hands on engaging meal, this is perfect for kids ages 10 and up.

STUFF YOU NEED

Rice

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Seaweed sheets

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Bamboo mats

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avocado

Peppers

Crab meat

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Carrots

Cucumber

Spicy sauce Siracha

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Tuna

Smoked Salmon

Soy sauce

Rice Vinegar

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Wasabi

Ginger

Bamboo Rolling Sheets

Glad press and seal paper

Multiple dipping bowls for sauces

Sharpe cutlery

Multiple cutting boards

PREP THE SPACE:

Clear the counter space and make room for a buffet style assembly line.

I would advise making the sticky rice first! I highly suggest a rice cooker for this portion of the program. This is the possibly the biggest component to a successful sushi roll. Make more than you think you will need.  NOTE: sticky rice will not double as steamed rice to eat later.  What is left over will be tossed in the garbage.

Follow the step by step recipe below.

Next, pop open a bottle of wine / sake / champagne and begin prepping the innards of the roll! Give everyone a cutting board and a knife for slicing all the good stuff!  Make sure you have sharp cutlery.

Carrots, avocado, cucumber, cream cheese, jalapeño, and ginger!  We made long thin strands of carrots, cream cheese, crab meat, cream cheese and avocado.

Let someone peel and shave off fresh ginger root.

Set out bowls or trays for easy access and scooping the accoutrements.

Get dipping bowls: Fill them full of soy sauce, wasabi and ginger.

Note: wash hands before you touch and manage food and fresh raw fish.

Lastly, boss someone around and have them wrap and seal all of the bamboo rolling sheet with press and seal paper by Glad.  Make sure to cover it and seal it all over to prevent the sticky rice from gunking up the bamboo.  You’re welcome!, hae a small bowl of rice vinegar set out to dip your hands/fingers into before you begin spreading the rice – so it doesn’t stick to your hands!

Once the rice is complete and all of the sides are cut up you’re ready to Rock and ROLL!

Inside out or outside in?  

Roll the way you like it!  

How to make perfect sticky rice!

1 Wash the rice (1 cup = 3 rolls) with running Water for 1-2 minutes until there is no more starch coming out of it. After you are done washing, take the rice and place it gently in a pot, add a little bit more water than rice. The ratio is about 1.2 : 1 in favor of the water. That is 20% more water than rice. Don’t put too much water, or you’ll get dough instead of rice.
Still not sure? Check out our Quantities calculator.

2 Cooking the rice
The rice should be cooked on high heat at first, stir every minute or two, until the water boils. Then, lower the heat to minimum and cover the pot. Stop stirring, the rice will handle itself from now. Why? That is just the Japanese way…
After 6-8 min, check the water level – If there is no more water, only bigger grains of rice in the pot, that means the rice is ready. If not, check back every minute, making sure not to burn the rice at the bottom.

1 Taking out the rice
There are a few important issues to keep in mind while taking the rice out of the pot. You think I’m kidding right? Well I’m not. First, use only a wooden spoon to handle the cooked rice. A metal spoon will damage the rice, and can also react with the vinegar we’ll add later. Second, don’t scrape the rice out from the bottom of the pot. If it comes out easily, good, if not – leave it be. The rice at the bottom is dry and burned so it won’t taste so good. Use a wooden or plastic bowl to put the rice in to chill.

In order for the rice to taste like sushi rice (and not like ordinary rice), you need to add rice vinegar to it right after it is taken out of the pot.
How is this done?

1 For 3 cups of (uncooked) rice, use ½ cup of rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 teaspoons of salt. Use only rice vinegar! Any other kind of vinegar will taste bad. -Alternatively, you could use Sushi rice seasoning powder.

2 Mix together in a small pot, on medium heat until all solids are mixed in.

3 Pour mixture on rice and mix well. That should take a minute or two.

4 Let the rice cool down for a few minutes until it reaches room temperature. Don’t put the rice in the fridge to make it cool faster – that will damage the rice. You can however use a fan, A/C or put it by the window.

5 Important tip – Some people prefer their sushi rice less seasoned. Also, there might be differences in strength and flavour between different brands of rice vinegar. If it’s the first time you are making sushi rice, and you are not sure, prepare the amount of seasoning described above, but only use half of it. Mix it with the rice and taste.
Trust your own senses if you like to use the full amount or not.

Meal Plan & FIT Tips

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For sides, as if we needed more than the fattest stuffed tuna roll, we also had seared AHI TUNA that was out of this world. I must not forget the homemade fried rice with egg, peas, carrots soy sauce and a spicy crab salad that packed a punch.

Another bright easy to make idea would be a big serving of seaweed salad and or pot of miso soup.

Now…I have yet to try this at home. I’m not sure where to buy the fresh seafood but my best guess is H Mart. But rest assured, when I do I will NOT be alone!

Remember the key is to get your people involved. All hands on deck. While you’re at it, play a little Kung-foo-fighting and loosen everyone up.

What better than a cold gallon of homemade chocolate almond coffee ice cream?

The perfect pallet pleaser with bubbly to end a boisterous eccentric evening with a wonderful crew! And as they say in Japanese, Kung-pai which means cheers!

Love, Love lean and eat clean!

Angi xo

Sushi is a protein packed low fat food. It’s Rick in Fish oils and omega 3! It’s low calorie and has natural fats. It’s definitely on the Abercrombie and FITness approved food list.

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