How to Make Sushi
I started cooking when I was eleven years old. My parents had split up and my mother went back to work. So during the summer if we wanted anything other than cereal or sandwiches we had to learn to make it on our own. I remember my older brother, who at the time was a cook in a restaurant, sat me down and taught me how to make an omelet and so began my culinary journey. Since that time I have practiced many different cuisines and I am a fairly accomplished self trained gourmet cook. When I was a teenager I used to throw big Italian dinner parties for my friends. Most of this cuisine I learned from my mother and then improved ...view middle of the document...
We started with a California Roll followed by pieces Ebi (shrimp) Sushi, and then it was time to try some raw fish. We each had a spicy Maguro Temaki (tuna hand roll) followed by pieces of Sake (Fresh salmon) sushi. The last thing we had was a Tekka Maki or tuna roll. Eating raw fish had been as foreign to me as the language of the names of the sushi but the exquisite flavors of the fresh fish and the heat of a little Wasabi (like horseradish) mixed with the saltiness of the soy sauce kept me coming back.
Since that night I have regularly eaten sushi. I prefer to sit at the bar where I can watch as the sushi chefs prepare plates that would challenge the beauty of the plates of any French chef. When I met my wife she was only a cooked sushi eater but now has tried almost as many different types of sushi as I have. There is a true art form to preparing sushi and because I consider myself an artist in the other cuisines I prepare, I was drawn to the challenge of learning to prepare sushi. There is a methodology that if one prepares sushi enough times could become a second nature. The better the methodology the better the art form.
My journey began with researching on the internet were one might be able to find classes, books, and tools of the trade. There were two books that were highly regarded by readers since they were both complete books of sushi I chose the one with a little less background and a bit more on technique called The Complete Book of Sushi (Dekura Treloar, & Yoshii 2004). This book had many pictures so I would be able to measure my progress toward my goal. I also signed up for a class a Central Market although, at the time I did not know what my learning curve would be. I started to read the book and came to the understanding that I would need some basic equipment if I wanted to be successful. Since I had done some preliminary research I knew that there was a Japanese market named Nippon Daido not far from my house. So, I went on a shopping trip. I purchased a very sharp sushi knife (a very sharp knife is needed) a bamboo rolling mat (makisu), A rice cooling tub (hangiri), some high quality rice, and some seaweed paper (nori). I also purchase some fresh sushi ingredients like flying fish eggs (tobiko) seaweed salad and a few other items. Nippon Daido carried great sashimi quality fish but I had already bought some frozen sashimi grade tuna and salmon. After reading a little further and trying to cook the rice stove top, it became painfully apparent that I would need a rice cooker if I was going to even get close to my goal. I went out the next day and purchased a rice cooker. The book was correct my rice came out perfect I added the rice vinegar mixture I had from some other Asian cuisine I had made and dove right in. I started trying to make topped rice sushi or nigiri sushi. The instruction for this type of sushi was in the middle of the book. I flipped to the page and looked at the picture and then tried to recreate...