Futomaki sushi


Futomaki Sushi is popular in Japan.  My mother makes this at New Years day or any celebrate occasion.  Or when she invites  some guests to her house, sometimes she makes this.   When I was a child and have school sports day, my mom makes this so we will have lunch together at the school ground.  It is almost finger food, easy to pick and eat.  It is made by rice and other things together, fill you up.  It is usually colorful and pretty, but most of all, it is very tastey!!

Futomaki (太巻?, “thick, large or fat rolls”) is a large cylindrical piece, with nori on the outside. A typical futomaki is three or four centimeters (1.5 in) in diameter. They are often made with two or three fillings that are chosen for their complementary tastes and colors. During the Setsubun festival, it is traditional in Kansai to eat uncut futomaki in its cylindrical form, where it is particularly called ehou-maki (恵方巻, lit. happy direction rolls). Futomaki is often vegetarian, but may include non-vegetarian toppings such as tiny fish roe and chopped tuna.

You can read more from Wikipedia – futomaki.

You can put any other ingredients than what I introduce here, if you have any good idea.  This is what I choose this time.

Ingredients:  About 4 rolls

Shiitake ———————————————————-15 pieces
Carrots ———————————————————–1
Avocado ———————————————————1
Egg omelettes —————————————————–1 (3 eggs I used)
Tuna can ———————————————————1 can
Mayonnaise ——————————————————-3TBS
Sushi Rice (see this page)————————————–3 cupsof uncooked rice

How to make shiitake:

dried shiitake how to cook dried shiitake how to cook shiitake cut dried shiitake

dashi cooking dried shiitake cooked shitake

You will leave dried shiitake in the water until it soften.  When it become soft, cut like this picture.

Put Dashi in the pot and sugar, soy sauce, mirin, sake, and salt and shiitake.  Put high heat until it boils  and turn the heat to low.  Cook it until the dashi is gone like picture above.

carrots carrots carrots in the vineger avocado

Julian carrots or I recommend to use this Benriner Japanese Mandoline Slicer
.  I use this company and it is very handy for Japanese cooking.  You can slice vegetables by this very thin.  I will recommend this if you are looking for to buy one for your Japanese cooking.  This make Sashimi Tsuma (Daikon) very easy!  Of course you can use this for salad.

After you julian carrots, put in the bowl with 1TBS vinegar and 1TSP sugar together.  If you have put sesame seeds.  leave it about 10 min and mix well.  Then dump the vinegar and squeeze the carrots so that there is no remaining vinegar.  You don’t use watery carrots.

When you make tuna and mayonnaise, dump the can tuna water well.  Then mix with mayonaise.  If it is too watery, when you make sushi roll, too much water and whole sushi will be watery.  It make easily break Nori.

Make Egg omelettes from this page and cut long and skinny way (picture below).

This time, I use those ingredients below to my Futomaki.

futomaki ingredients

how to make sushi how to make sushi how to make sushi

This is how to roll sushi.   Put rice ball on the Nori (sea weeds) and spread on the Nori. Front of you and other side of the nori, you should leave the space (not spread rice) about 1/3 inch. When you spread rice, DO NOT tighten the rice. You need spread rice softely with air. Do not pack the rice on Nori.

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The middle picture I spread the ingredients so you can see I put them all.
However, when you are ready to roll (Picture on the right), I put all ingredients make a mount (pile up) so I can roll easily.

You need to buy this Helen’s Asian Kitchen Bamboo Sushi Mat with Paddle , it is called sunoco.

how to make sushi how to roll sushi how to roll sushi how to roll sushi

1)  You roll from your side.  Left picture, where my index finger is the end of the Nori which is the edge of the sushi.  I am wrapping all ingredients in my palm.  The edge of the sushi is almost end of the ingredients line.  Roll into the ingredients.

2)  You move Sunoko so as roll the sushi the end of the other side.

3)  Make whole thing roll and put a little bit  pressure to make it round.  Do not push too hard.

4)  Finish rolling

Tip for cutting the sushi:
Wet and clean your knife each time when you cut the roll sushi.  Use very sharp knife – see my knife section.  Do not cut slowly.  If you cut slowly, you break nori and sushi will be break open.  Cut quickly, that is why you really need a sharp good knife.

Tip for Nori:
There are different kind of Nori.  Sushi Hane or Sushi Nori is good for sushi.  Usually those are cheap kind compare of other kind of Japanese Nori.  It is thicker than expensive Nori.  I don’t know why less is more (expensive) but thin Nori texture is more easy to eat (it means Nori is not stay in your mouth.  thin nori is disolved quickly, easy to swallow.  more crunchy than thicker Nori)  I think the texture of nori makes price different.

Because wrapping the rice and other ingredients, thicker nori is stronger.  For the beginner, it is easy to handle them.

I usually serve this way, sometimes make a pyramid.  Use soy sauce and wasabi a side and put them before eat it.  However,  Futomaki has usually already taste to it so you don’t need to put soy sauce.  You can enjoy sweetness of shiitake.  Sweet Japanese teriyaki like taste and mayonnaise is very good harmony together.  You can enjoy this great Futomaki taste!

futomaki sushi



Cooking Sushi Rice in the house

Cooking sushi rice in the house is easy. I will write 2 different ways of How to make Sushi rice.
People may think Sushi is Japanese food with raw fish. It is not!
Sushi is Su (vinegar) and Rice together, it is called Su-meshi (rice) and you arranged with some other ingredients and it become sushi.
So we have many varieties of sushi.  Now you can cook sushi rice and make sushi in your own home!

how to make sushi rice

This is from Wikipedia sushi page and Sumeshi section: Sushi is made with white, short-grained, Japanese rice mixed with a dressing made of rice vinegar, sugar, salt, and occasionally kombu and sake. It has to be cooled to room temperature before being used for a filling in a sushi or else it will get too sticky while being seasoned. Traditionally, the mixing is done with a hanger, which is a round, flat-bottom wooden tub or barrel, and a wooden paddle (shamoji).

Sushi rice (sushi-meshi or su-meshi 酢飯) is prepared with short-grain Japanese rice, which has a consistency that differs from long-grain strains such as those from India, Thailand, and Vietnam. The essential quality is its stickiness or glutinousness. Rice that is too sticky has a mushy texture; if not sticky enough, it feels dry. Freshly harvested rice (shinmai) typically contains too much water, and requires extra time to drain the rice cooker after washing. In some fusion cuisine restaurants, short grain brown rice and wild rice are also used. – If you want to read more, go to Wikipedia page.

First of all, when you make sushi, you need su-meshi (vinegar-rice). That is the basic for sushi.
so I will teach you how to make su-meshi the sushi rice.

There are 2 ways: instant version and long version.
You can choose whichever you like and make sushi rice and make sushi!
You have to master it, and then you can make sushi (next step).

This is the easiest one – instant version.
You can read my How to cook Japanese Rice page and cook Japanese rice first.

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You can cook Japanese rice the regular way, and you buy the “Sushi no ko” the powder vinegar package to make sushi rice. You need to simply mix with regular rice and make sushi rice.

      sushi meshi

how to mix sushi rice  how to mix sushi rice  how to mix sushi rice  how to mix sushi rice

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However, how to mix the rice is a bit tricky. You don’t mix rice like you mix dough. You don’t want to smash the individual rice like paste. You will destroy the rice taste and can not make good sushi rice. Mix rice by cutting across it in a slashing motion, and then cool it by fanning.

The second row of pictures, you put the spatula in the middle far from you.

First, you move the spatula pulling toward you and flip the rice over to the left side.
Next, go in the opposite direction Scoop rice left bottom and flip over to the right side.
This will mix the vinegar and rice together without squishing the rice.

how to cook sushi rice in the jar

This is the picture of my rice cooker.
The left bar said regular rice, if you major 3.5 cups of rice (1 cup is 180cc, not 250cc like American standard), you put the water up to the left bar to the 3.5 line.

The second left is sushi rice bar. If you want to make sushi rice, do the same 3.5cups of rice and you put water until that line. Now you see for the same cups of rice the water is less than regular rice. Sushi rice use less water to cook it. Why is this? Because, you have to add vinegar and sugar after you cook sushi rice. So if you cook with regular water, the sushi rice is too watery.

Rice ————————————————–2cup (360cc, 360g)

Water———————————————— 560cc (19oz)
Konbu ———————————————–1 inch square

Sushi su (Sushi vinegar)

Rice vinegar——————————————-4tbs

You prepare to cook the rice – read how to cook Japanese rice page. When you cook the rice, put Konbu into the pot with the water and cook it.

It is better to have Konbu in the rice to cook with it but if you can not get it, it is OK. Cook the rice without Konbu.

When the rice is cooked, transfer the hot rice into the sushi-oke (picture above -wooden sushi bowl) or big bowl (if it is possible, put flat plate or bowl). Spread out the rice gently and cool down the rice a little. If you use sushi – oke, before you transfer the rice, you wet the oke with vinegar. You wet the cloth with vinegar and wipe the inside of the oke (bowl). I usually put vinegar in the oke and wet the oke and dump the vinegar out.

When the rice is not extremely hot, put mixed vinegar ingredients on the rice and mix it. When you put mixed vinegar ingredients (its call Sushi su – sushi vinegar) do not put directly onto the rice. Put spatula over the rice and put sushi su over the spatula.

Again, Mix the rice by cutting across it in a slashing motion, then cool it by fanning.