Yup, that’s how we roll. Who doesn’t love California Roll? I still have friends in LA who are squeamish about raw fish (I know, how can this be?) but I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love the sweet, fluffy, sticky, crunchy and salty goodness of a California Roll. One of my proudest moments was when my 5 year-old son Dylan chose California Roll over pizza at the food court. He can eat 12 pieces at a time and asked me last week why I never put the recipe on my blog. I broke out my sushi mat and put Dylan and his sister Becca to work. Not only is this a great healthy dinner or snack, kids have so much fun making their own creations. So this one’s for you, Dylan! While making sushi rolls seems complicated, it’s really very easy. You just need to know the basics and a few simple tips. If you want to splurge, use fresh lump crabmeat but crabsticks are fine for everyday dining. Squeeze some lemon juice on the avocado after it’s been cut to prevent it from browning.
First start with all of your ingredients ready to go. Cover your bamboo mat with a piece of plastic wrap and place the nori on top of the mat.
Wet your fingers and spread the sushi rice evenly over the nori.
Turn the sheet of nori over so that the rice side is down. Place 1/8 of the cucumber, avocado and crab sticks in the center of the sheet.
Grab the edge of the mat closest to you, keeping the fillings in place with your fingers, and roll it into a tight cylinder, using the mat to shape the cylinder. Sprinkle the roll with sesame seeds. Voila! You’re done. Now, just slice with a wet serrated knife and serve!
- 1 medium avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced into 1/4-inch thick pieces
- 4 sheets nori
- sushi rice (recipe follows)
- 1/3 cup sesame seeds, toasted
- 1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into matchstick-size pieces
- 4 crabsticks, torn into pieces
- Pickled ginger
- Soy sauce
- Sushi Rice:
- 1 cup sushi or short grain rice
- 1 cup water, plus extra for rinsing rice
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Make the sushi rice: Place the rice into a mixing bowl and cover with cool water. Let soak for 20 minutes. Swirl the rice in the water, pour off and repeat 2 to 3 times or until the water is clear.
- Place the rice and 1 cup of water into a medium saucepan and place over high heat. Bring to a boil, uncovered. Once it begins to boil, reduce the heat to the lowest setting and cover. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Combine the rice vinegar, sugar and salt in a small bowl and heat in the microwave on high for 30 to 45 seconds or bring the mixture to a simmer in a saucepan. Transfer the rice into a large wooden or glass mixing bowl and add the vinegar mixture. Fold thoroughly to combine and coat each grain of rice with the mixture. Allow to cool to room temperature.
- Cover a bamboo rolling mat with plastic wrap. Cut nori sheets in half crosswise. Lay 1 sheet of nori, shiny side down, on the plastic covered mat. Wet your fingers with water and spread about 1/2 cup of the rice evenly onto the nori. Sprinkle the rice with sesame seeds.
- Turn the sheet of nori over so that the rice side is down. Place 1/8 of the cucumber, avocado and crab sticks in the center of the sheet. Grab the edge of the mat closest to you, keeping the fillings in place with your fingers, and roll it into a tight cylinder, using the mat to shape the cylinder. Pull away the mat and set aside. Repeat until all rolls are completed. Slice each roll into into six pieces using a wet serrated knife. Serve with ginger, wasabi and soy sauce.