Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Sushi Chronicles

Cooking is one of my favorite hobbies. I started--like many people--with homemade spaghetti sauce. It took me awhile to come up with just the right mix of spices, oils, and other chopped up ingredients, but the final product was worth it, and is ever evolving. After conquering spaghetti sauce (does anyone really ever conquer spaghetti sauce?) I began to experiment with a variety of world dishes and vegetarian styles, and came up with a few inventions of my own; I'll work on a dish pretty regularly until I get what I feel to be an authentic thumbs up from my wife and kids, and then will move on to the next thing.

That next thing is Sushi.

My wife and I have been hitting this little sushi joint near our house for about a year now on our weekly dates, experimenting with all of the different variations, and learning all kinds of cool new words. It's fun to sit at the bar and chit-chat with the chef as he does his thing, and the food is delicious.

For some reason, it had never ocurred to me that I could make sushi. It just seemed really complicated and intricate, and I've always been a little touch-and-go with rice based meals. But one day, I said what the hell; I googled sushi, got a recipe, and went down to our local Asian market to get all of the necessary ingredients. Not much to it at all, it turned out. Boil some rice, lay down a piece of seaweed on a slab, chop up your desired ingredients, spread a thin layer of rice down on the seaweed, top with vinegar and the ingredients, roll tightly, cut and eat.

It took me a couple of tries to make it not look (or taste) totally amateurish, but I think I'm on my way. I had to realize that you need to wet your knife frequently while cutting up the rolls, in order to prevent tearing. Another good lesson learned was to roll the sushi pretty tight, so the seaweed absorbs some of the juices, and isn't too chewy.

My most recent attempt:

It's not there quite yet, but the family seems to dig it:

Next up: Nigiri!


GbiZ said...

Your kids are into Star Wars and sushi. You're doing something right.

Willie Y said...

I love to cook as well. I have not tried to make Sushi myself as of yet. The nearest Asian market in Maine is actually in Asia. So getting the tools will have to be a labor of love.
Oh, and for your information, if you ever visit the northeast, it's gravy not spaghetti sauce.

Lodo Grdzak said...

Ha ha! And even Maggie gets into the act. Love it!