Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sushi Ninjas are Bullshit

Like everybody else who's been to a sushi bar, I assumed making sushi and maki rolls was some arcane and skilled art, full of difficult technique and requiring years of practice like glass blowing or finding the G-spot. Sushi chefs and aficionados encourage these assumptions and act like they're initiates into a select order. It takes two years before an apprentice is allowed to touch a knife. They practice rolling sheets of brass to build their finger muscles. They climb a mountain to a retreat where elders teach the technique for stirring rice. They walk silently and can kill with a single touch. They shit bonbons and sneeze kittens. They have the power of flight and their jism tastes like peach schnapps. Turns out it's a fucking scam and anybody can do it. Piece of cake. Lets go through the misconceptions the sushi mafia has instilled into our consciousness one by one.

  • You need special rice
  • You need to condition the rice after cooking
  • You need a sushi mat
  • Proportions are critical
  • You need a special technique for rolling
All bullshit. I used regular Calrose rice. I soaked it for a couple hours in water while I did other things, then rinsed it and cooked it in vegetable stock like normal rice. I didn't do anything to it after it was cooked, didn't let it ferment over night, didn't add any vinegar, didn't do anything, just spooned it onto the nori and spread it out. I didn't have a sushi mat, so I laid the nori on a kitchen towel. I have no idea how much rice is standard, so I covered about two thirds of the sheet with rice and then stacked the filling toward the front edge. I didn't know how to get the rolling started, so I just lifted the front edge of the kitchen towel and folded it over, continuing the until the nori was wrapped around the middles. Worked fine the very first time.

For the middle, I sliced and marinated some scorched-and-peeled red pepper filets in grated ginger, horseradish, garlic and sesame oil, and stacked them with some smoked ham, julienne of celery and mint leaves. I can't believe how easy it was to make totally tasty nori rolls. The JP doesn't permit soy sauce, so I started an attempt at a dipping sauce made with olive oil, siracha and horseradish, but it turned out to be totally unnecessary as the rolls went down great nude.*

I know these aren't beautiful, but they totally hold up as food, and that's a lot closer than the lore of the Sushi Ninja would have you believe possible for just winging it. Makes me want to try my hand at cataract surgery or watchmaking next.

*You probably thought this was going to be that's what she said, but no, it was just a comment about the rolls not needing a sauce. Cock. Double cock. Made you look at double cocks just now.


  1. Going to give it a try, Mr.NonSushiNinja. The sauce sounds great so I may just do that. On a totally unrelated note, I once made sushi candy for a birthday party. That was fun.

    (word verification ... mogra)

  2. Let me know how the cataract surgery turns out. I made a sushi bowl type thing for dinner tonight--brown rice, seared tofu, green onion, avocado and sesame--quite good though not JP because it used a citrus dressing.

  3. Finding the G spot isn't any more difficult than making nori. Just sayin.


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