Preparation Time: 60 minutes
This recipe is a little more time consuming than my average recipe, but it is a fun treat every now and then. Once you have the various ingredients prepped, the actual rolling goes quickly. Be sure to check out my how-to video here. You can find nori (dried seaweed sheets) in the Asian food section of most grocery stores, or on amazon.
Typically, these rolls will include julienne strips of daikon, a yellow pickled radish. You can customize your rolls to suit your family’s likes and dislikes. Cucumber and avocado are excellent additions. Some people like a bit of mayo spread on the rice before adding the other filling ingredients.
For the pork:
- 1/2 pound pork (pork roast works well)
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sugar
For the rice:
- 2 cups short-grain rice
- 2-1/4 cups water
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar (or substitute regular vinegar)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 package of nori (dried seaweed) about 10 sheets
- 2 carrots, cut into julienne strips
- black pepper
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil (or olive oil)
- 3 cups baby spinach
- 4 eggs
- salt and pepper
Start by rinsing 2 cups of short grain rice, and then cook it in 2-1/4 cups of water. When the rice is done, combine rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small bowl. Warm it in microwave for a few seconds and stir again until salt and sugar dissolve. Drizzle vinegar mixture over the rice, lifting and folding rice gently with a spoon so that the vinegar mixture coats all the rice. Cover rice and set aside.
Next, peel and slice carrots into julienne strips. Cut pork in a similar way, trimming away fat as needed. Toss pork with garlic, soy sauce and sugar. Heat sesame oil in a heavy skillet over medium high heat. Add pork to hot skillet and cook for 5-7 minutes, until browned and cooked through. Remove from skillet. Now add the carrots and a bit of black pepper to the same hot skillet and cook 3-5 minutes, until carrots soften and get some browned bits. Remove them from the skillet. Turn skillet down to medium low.
Whisk the eggs in a medium bowl. Add just a little bit of oil or cooking spray to the skillet. Cook egg mixture over medium low heat without stirring, until egg is nearly set. Carefully flip the egg ‘pancake’ over and cook another minute. Remove egg to a plate, salt lightly, and cut egg into long thin strips.
Rinse the spinach, pat dry, and place in a bowl. Now gather together all your ingredients and get ready to roll! For a video demonstration, check out the sushi-rolling video on my blog!
Begin by laying a sheet of seaweed on the counter in front of you. Take about half a cup of rice and spread it over the 2/3 of the seaweed that is closest to you. Leave about a 2-inch wide strip of seaweed uncovered at the farthest edge of the piece of seaweed.
Now put a line of baby spinach horizontally across the center 1/3 of the rice layer. Top the spinach with a long strip of egg, a couple strips of carrot, and a couple strips of meat. Try to arrange the ingredients so that the ingredients span the whole width of the seaweed, and hang off the edge of the seaweed on both sides just a little.
Next comes the tricky part. Gently but firmly roll the seaweed up, starting with the edge closest to you and rolling away from your body. Try to keep the filling in the center of the roll. To do this you will probably have to tuck bits back in as you roll. The last bit of seaweed that you roll up should be the bit that doesn’t have any rice on it. Press roll firmly together and set the roll on a plate with the seam side down.
stress if your first couple rolls look ugly. Remember, this is an
adventure, and nobody is an instant expert! If your seaweed splits in
spots, you may have used a bit too much rice. Your next roll, or the one after that, will
probably be better.
Let the sushi rolls sit for 5 minutes or so before you try to cut them. This allows the seaweed and rice to meld together and makes the rolls more stable. Cut the rolls crosswise into 1 inch slices, using the thinnest, sharpest knife you have, rinsing the knife off every now and then if it gets sticky.
The first cut on the end of each roll won’t be as pretty as the center cuts, but they’re still delicious. My kids love to snitch them as I’m cutting. Serve warm or cold, with wasabi or soy sauce.