We celebrate my husband’s and children’s Japanese ancestry with a traditional Japanese dinner that includes Japanese sushi rolls for Christmas Eve dinner. We all gather around the kitchen and make the rolls together. It is so much fun!
Maki Rolls and Nigiri Rolls are the main ones that we make. Maki rolls are pieces of seaweed that are filled with rice and raw fish. Nigiri are molded rice balls topped with raw fish. Tuna and salmon rolls and Shrimp Tempura rolls are our favorites!
The freshest sushi grade tuna and salmon are used and we make tempura shrimp for the tempura shrimp rolls. Japanese mayonnaise, avocado, cucumber and carrots are frequently used. We change the recipes every time we make them. Don’t forget the wasabi and soy sauce for dipping your sushi rolls.
Making the rice is the first step. Cooking rice in a rice cooker makes it easy to cook in large batches. I had a rice cooker that my in-laws in Hawaii gave me in 1977 and it lasted for 30 years. There are many varieties of rice cookers on Amazon that you will see and purchasing one will make your rice cooking easier.
You will want to purchase a bamboo rolling mat. Here are several on Amazon that might work for you.
Tuna and salmon rolls
1 hrPrep Time
20 minCook Time
1 hr, 20 Total Time
- 4 cups short grain sushi rice
- 8 cups water
- 1/2 cup rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 sheets nori
- 2 cups sushi rice, recipe above
- 2 ounces sushi-grade tuna, cut into 1/4 by 1/2 by 3-inch strips
- 2 ounces sushi-grade salmon, cut into 1/4 by 1/2 by 3-inch strips
- 6 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1/2 cup tempura batter mix
- 1/2 cup ice water
- 1 hothouse cucumber, julienne
- 1 carrot, peeled and julienne
- 1 avocado, thinly sliced
- Rinse the rice in cold water while stirring briskly to remove powder on rice. Drain the rice completely, Place the rice and the water in pot and boil over medium heat. Allow the water to boil for a few minutes and then reduce the heat to low and continue cooking 15 minutes without removing the lid. Remove the rice from the heat.
- Turn the rice onto a well-greased cookie sheet using a spatula or rice paddle. Sprinkle the rice with the vinegar, sugar and salt while stirring with the rice paddle or spatula. Keep stirring until the rice is almost room temperature. Cover with a damp cloth or paper towel.
- Make the tempura batter according to directions on the box.
- To prepare the tempura shrimp, dip the shrimp into tempura batter and fry in hot oil until batter is crisp. Drain on paper towels.
- Place a nori sheet lengthwise on a bamboo rolling mat. Position the sheet about 1-inch from the edge closest to you and leave some of the bamboo matt exposed on the side of the nori sheet. Wet your hands in cool water and place a handul of sushi rice. Place the rice in the center of the nori using your fingers to spread the rice evenly over the nori. Be sure to leave 3/4 inch strip of nori uncovered on the far side.
- Place tuna or salmon or tempura shrimp down center of rice. Then place some julienne vegetables, cucumber or avocado along the side of the rice. Be careful not to overfill the nori. Place your fingertips along the edges to hold in place.
- Begin rolling while placing pressure on the fillings to keep the filling on the roll on the mat . Press down on the roll to keep in place and make the roll firm.
- When completely rolled, press the nori together at the seam.
- If you want a spicy roll, place some spicy mayo along the inside of the rice before rolling.
- Other items that you might want to use in the sushi are: cream cheese, imitation krab, salmon eggs and other types of fish.
- Cut each roll into 6-8 equally sized pieces