52 Recipes: Spicy Chicken & Vegetable Sushi

I love sushi. I could eat it every single day. You might think that's an exaggeration, but I promise it isn't. I love it so much that for my wedding I registered for my very own set of sushi dishes and a bamboo rolling mat. Since then I've been dying to try making my own, and yesterday I finally mustered up the courage.

Everybody says the rice is the most challenging part. You have to make it sticky enough to keep the roll together but not let it get mushy. Still being a little uneasy in the kitchen I was pretty nervous about accomplishing this perfect balance. I did, literally, hours of research before I even headed to the store, and I'm so glad that I did. Not only did my rice turn out perfectly, but now all of you can benefit from the tips and tricks that I learned. 

First, you'll need all the proper ingredients. I was lucky enough to find this Sushi Chef brand that had all the necessities.

For the rice you'll need the following:
Sushi rice
Rice vinegar

You'll also want to pick up:
Dehydrated seaweed
Pickled ginger

I opted for a very tame combination of chicken and vegetables, because Tom is not as adventurous an eater as I. 

Alright, let's get started!

1. Rinse your rice. Put 2 cups of rice into a pot with cold water. Mix around the rice until the water becomes cloudy. Drain the water and repeat the process until the water remains completely clear.

2. Boil your rice. Combine your 2 cups of cleaned rice with 2 cups of water in a pot over high heat. Bring to a boil. 

3. Cover your rice. Once it reaches a boil reduce the heat to low and cover for 15 minutes. During this time do not remove the lid--releasing any steam will effect the rice's consistency.

4. Remove from heat. After 15 minutes remove your rice from the heat. Keep covered and let it stand for 10 minutes more.

5. Make your vinegar mixture. In a separate bowl combine 2 tbsp vinegar, 2 tbsp sugar, and 1 tbsp salt. Set this aside.

6. Combine rice and vinegar. Put your rice in a baking pan and spread it out evenly. Pour your vinegar mixture over the rice. Use a large wooden spoon to gently fold your rice until the mixture evenly covers everything. Set this aside until the rice cools to room temperature. 

While your rice is cooking and cooling prepare your fillings, and chop everything into a long skinny pieces.

7. Prepare your sushi. Lay out a sheet of seaweed on your bamboo mat. Cover the piece with a generous layer of rice, but leave a half inch open at the top. Lay your fillings horizontally in the center of the seaweed as pictured below.

8. Roll it up! Hold the fillings in place and slowly roll the mat forward until the ends touch. Dampen your finger and run some water along the edges to help them stick together. Gently apply pressure to the entire roll and remove the bamboo mat. Dampen a sharp knife and gently cut your roll into bite-sized pieces.

Enjoy with some pickled ginger, a dollop of wasabi, and a little soy sauce.

Have you ever made your own sushi? What kind of fillings did you use? I'd love some ideas for my future experimentations!

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