Japanese food: How to make and eat “Temaki-zushi” (hand-rolled sushi)

2020-06-03 OTHERS
Living in JAPAN JOBS
Living in JAPAN JOBS

この投稿は 日本語 でもお読みいただけます

There are a number of different types of sushi, such as “Nigiri-zushi”, “Chirashi-zushi”, “Oshi-zushi”, and “Inari-zushi”. Therefore, on this occasion, I would like to introduce you to “Temaki-zushi”, one of the “Maki-zushi” (rolled sushi) family, eaten wrapped in “nori” seaweed paper, which can be made simply by anyone at home.

What is “Temaki-zushi”?

This is a type of sushi in which a variety of ingredients are eaten with “nori” and vinegar rice. Generally, “Maki-zushi” is wrapped using a “Makisu” (blind made of thinly cut bamboo used for cooking), but “Temaki-zushi” can be wrapped by hand.

This is a type of home cooking that can not only be used for ordinary meals, but is also a favorite at times of celebrations or home parties. As you can choose not only “sashimi” (raw fish”, but also other favorite ingredients, such as meat or vegetables, it can be enjoyed by all age groups from children to adults. It is a type of food that can be enjoyed together with people who have different tastes in food, such as those who are not so keen on raw fish or “natto”.

How to make

Preparing “Sumeshi” (vinegared rice)

Make “sushi vinegar by mixing rice vinegar, sugar, and salt together. It is convenient to use shop-bought “sushi vinegar”. There is the powdered type as well as the liquid type.

  1. Put some freshly cooked rice in a bowl or large plate, and after adding sushi vinegar, mix the rice in the way a cutting action without crushing the grains.
  2. When the sushi vinegar is mixed in, fan using a hand fan to remove the excess moisture.
    If there is too much sushi vinegar, remove the moisture by heating it in a microwave.
  3. Fold once again in a cutting motion, turning it upside down, and once it all reaches the temperature of the human body, it is complete.

If you are not planning to use it right away, cover it with moistened kitchen paper so that the vinegared rice does not dry out.

Prepare the ingredients

There are no particular rules. Cut the ingredients thinly so that they are easy to wrap. Avoid using ingredients with a large amount of juice.

Recommended ingredients

  • Seafood: Salmon, tuna, squid, salmon roe, sweet shrimp, boiled shrimp
  • Imitation crabmeat, “Chikuwa (tube-shaped fish paste cake)”, fish sausage, canned tuna
  • Meat: “Yaki-niku”, Japanese fried chicken, “Soboro” (flavoured minced beef/pork/chicken flakes), “Shigureni” (meat that has been cooked in soy sauce and mirin), ham, sausage, bacon
  • Thick baked egg
  • Vegetables: Cucumber, sprouts, green onions, avocado, corn
  • Spices: Green shiso, “Myoga” ginger, “Bainiku” (umeboshi paste), sesame
  • “Takuwan” (pickled radish), natto

Prepare the “Nori”

When making “Temaki-zushi”, you should use extremely thin “Ita-nori” seaweed paper, which is dried in sheets. The standard size for “Ita-nori” is approximately 21x19cm. You can also use “Hansai” (half-sized) or “Yonsai” (quarter-sized) nori. Special nori for “Temaki-zushi” is available for general purchase.

If it becomes moist, it will be hard to bite through, so you should bring it out onto the table just before serving. You can dry “nori” that has become moist by placing it gently over a flame.

How to eat

Lay out the vinegared rice and ingredients on the table. Place the vinegared rice and ingredients, respectively, on the “nori” and eat after wrapping it by hand. There is no need to make it all together. Wrap it each time that you eat it.

Prepare condiments that match the ingredients. If you try to add these after wrapping, the ingredients may crumble, so it is better to add this when wrapping the ingredients.

How to wrap

  1. Spread the vinegared rice on the left side of the “nori”.
    Note that if you use too much vinegared rice, it will become difficult to wrap.
    If you spread this in a fan shape to leave space on the top-left and bottom-left, you will be able to wrap it neatly.
  2. Place your favorite ingredients at an angle on the vinegared rice at an angle, and add condiments.
    One of the enjoyable things about “Temaki-zushi” is considering what tastes and colors match.
    Note that if you have too many ingredients, it will be difficult to wrap.
  3. Wrap in a diagonal line from the bottom-left of the “nori”.
    Wrap the bottom side tightly, so that the vinegared rice and ingredients do not fall out when eating.

Arrangement Recipe

  • Wrapping with egg or lettuce
    You can use lightly baked egg or sunny lettuce etc. in place of the “nori”. These are not only delicious, but they can be eaten easily by children or the elderly who may find it difficult to bite the “nori”.
  • Mixing condiments  with the vinegared rice
    If you mix in sesame, finely chopped green “shiso” and “myoga” ginger into the rice vinegar, you try different flavors and textures.

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