Sunday, January 6, 2013

Sushi Rolls with Sesame Root Rice

Sesame Root Rice pg. 145
Vegetable Sushi Maki Rolls pg. 143

Vegetable Sushi Maki Roll
First off let me just give a standing ovation to all sushi chefs out there!  You leave me in ahhh of your skill and talent.  I will never ever take for granted how amazing you are ever again.  I will in fact  really appreciate the beauty of my next restaurant sushi experience.  I will sit front and center at the bar, so I can really watch as you prepare my rolls.  They are a work of art, an art form I have not mastered!

I have never made sushi rolls before.  Actually, I had never even bought nori sheets (seaweed).  So be kind to me and try not to laugh as I describe my experience.  This recipe was labeled a "1" in Crazy Sexy Kitchen.  Recipes labeled "1" are supposed to be easy to make.  A "1" maybe if you have made sushi before!

The recipe started out simple enough.  I made Sesame Root Rice.  It is actually not rice at all but instead parsnips, pine nuts and a few other things.
No cooking was involved in the Root Rice making so this came together pretty fast.  It was good too.
Sesame Root Rice
So this would be the rice filler in my Vegetable Sushi Maki Rolls.  This is a peak at the other veggies I used.
The bell pepper looks like it is smiling!
My amazing husband was right along side me as we chopped up everything for our rolls.  All was going according to plan.  Not so bad, so we thought.  We may have been a little over confident. My older son watched us with a skeptical eye.  We acted like we knew what we were doing.  My husband encouraged me, and I him.  It was actually quite a team builder after our difficult previous couple of days.  It was like we were completing some sort of Amazing Race challenge.   We started to assemble our rolls with visions of restaurant quality beauty. 

I tried to capture it all for you, but let me just apologize because the lighting sucks!  I take most of my pictures outside because I am strictly armature in the photography department.  Taking good pictures at night is really difficult.  They get very yellow.  So no need to talk behind my back and say my pictures kind of suck today.  I will say it for you! They suck!
Here is where things started to get a little sketchy.  We have laid out our roll (It was a thing of beauty. Ya right!).  The moment of truth,  bringing the sushi roll home by rolling it up.  This is much harder than it looks.  Before you ask, yes we had a bamboo sushi roll kit.  I bought it for 3.99 at Bed, Bath & Beyond!  Our first roll looked small and sad.

Not to mention how the heck do you cut the roll without smashing everything?  We tried knife after knife.  We sharpened them as well. My son was saying, "Just chop it really hard, total samurai style." I was desperate so I tried it! Hiiii Ya!  Nothing worked.  We finally used a bread knife which actually worked pretty good. 
Too Small!
The next set we thought to add some rice to the outside of the roll.  Maybe that will make it look better. These were too big!  It was like the Goldie Locks and the 3 Frickin sushi rolls.
Too Big!
So yes you get the picture, the next rolls were just right, or maybe just as right as they were gonna be.  At this point we brought out the alcohol, and started making cocktails!
The rolls ended up tasting way better than I thought they would.  We ate them all small, big and just right.  My husband made us Burning Mandarins just like we would get at Katsuya.  (Katsuya is a ultra trendy sushi bar where you might get a star sighting if you live in LA.  Lots of paparazzi hang outside trying to get the money shot.  Although the original Katsuya in Studio City, CA is by far better!)
Victory was ours!  Although, I think I will leave sushi making to the professionals.  Lastly, I will give you a sneak peak at the obstacles I faced trying to get a good photo.  My husband was holding the sushi over the sink as I stood on a chair hoping for some brightness!
Yep, I need to invest in some lighting!