Friday, January 02, 2009

California Rolls

For those of you still wondering how I use my pickled ginger, I usually serve them with these: California rolls. For years I bought California rolls as they are such a healthy snack, easily transportable and a good alternative for those trying to avoid wheat. Eventually I tried making them with not the best success, but then had a friend share the secret. Truth is that these are so easy I now make them quite often. They are showy for entertaining and quite popular here in the west.

California Rolls:

1 C rice (use either sushi rice or alternatively another sort of short grain rice. It is stickier and holds together better)
1/4 C rice vinegar
1 - 2 tsp sugar (depending on taste...more if you have difficulty with your rice sticking)
1 tsp salt
1 ripe avocado (peeled and cut into long thin slices)
1 English cucumber (peeled and cut into long thin slices)
1 carrot (julienne sliced)
toasted sesame seeds
sheets of nori seaweed

Cook the rice according to directions. Once the rice is cooked, stir in the sugar and rice vinegar and salt (the sugar and vinegar help the rice to stick more...problems start to occur if the rice does not stick). Let the rice cool completely.

Lay a bamboo sushi mat on the counter with the slats running horizontally (you can find these at most kitchen stores for a dollar or two. You can make the rolls without this, but it certainly facilitates the process). Place a sheet of nori on the mat. Spread rice on the sheet leaving a 1 inch border across the top edge. Arrange the avocado slices in a horizontal line across the middle of the rice. Add cucumber and carrot in the same manner. Sprinkle the sesame seeds. Put a light layer of mayonnaise on the top border of the seaweed that you left free. Grab the edge of the mat closest to you and roll the nori away from you as tightly as you can pressing the roll as you go. Seal by pressing the edge with the mayonnaise against the roll.

Use a sharp serrated knife to slice the rolls. I often wrap the rolls and refrigerate them for an hour before slicing them. Serve with soy or tamari sauce for dipping along with wasabi. Top with pickled ginger.

You can be quite creative in what you put inside the rolls. Avocado is always a favorite for me, but you could do things like smoked salmon and cream cheese, crab meat, eggs, sprouts or a varity of other vegetables. Enjoy.


we're doomed said...

Dear Carla, We have the best Sushi Bar in the world (my opinion) 29 miles from my home. It's a very healthy food and very delicious.

Steffi said...

Thank you for sharing your recipe!Sounds delicious and looks like Sushi!Yummy!

Steffi said...

Thank you for sharing your recipe.It sounds delicious and looks like Sushi!

Carla said...

We're Doomed, Vancouver has Tojo's. He is the actual creator of the California roll. I have never had better sushi in my life than what I had there. Like you said, healthy and delicious.

Steffi, Yes, you are right. The California roll is like a vegetarian version of sushi.

The Fool said...

G'morning Nomad. I sure do enjoy these scrumptious morsels. I'll have to pick up a sushi mat and give it a try. Thanks for sharing the how-to!

Carla said...

Fool, Watch out, it becomes quite addictive once you realize how easy they are to make. Enjoy.

Isle Dance said...

Absolutely beautiful. What a treat!

VE said...

Now what makes them "California" rolls? Why can't they be Michigan rolls?

Jannie said...

This just might turn me into a sushi lover.

My hubby loves these.

Carla said...

Ilse Dance, Yep, I always seem to enjoy them.

VE, Because no one envies Michigan.

Carla said...

Jannie, Give them a try, you can be as creative as you wish.

paris parfait said...

Thanks for this recipe. I love California rolls and had no idea making them wasn't difficult!

Carla said...

Tara, They're really very easy. The part that takes the most time is cooking the rice.