I love eating sushi rolls! I eat it every chance I get. My favorite type is the eel roll. I know it is an acquired taste, but it tastes yummy to me. During my pregnancy I craved sushi all of the time, but I couldn’t eat it. I know there were certain types I was able to eat, but I chose not to because once I had one roll then I would want more. A couple of weeks ago, I ate sushi almost every day for lunch. I spent anywhere from $5 to $8 a roll. That’s almost $40 a week just for me to eat lunch! I know I could have made lunch at home, but it was easier for me to run in a store and by a roll. I knew if I kept spending money on sushi at that rate then I would be close to spending $160 a month for my lunch. Since I wanted sushi rolls for lunch and I wanted to save money, I decided to try my hand at rolling sushi without a mat.
A few years ago my sister went to Japan and brought me back an authentic sushi roll making set, complete with mat and all. Well, the reason this tutorial is called Rolling Sushi Without a Mat is because I can’t find my set anywhere. At the time she bought me the set I hadn’t eaten sushi at all and was apprehensive about eating any type of raw fish (at least I thought all sushi was raw), so I packed the set away and now I have no idea where it is.
Now that I want to make sushi on my own, I had to learn how to roll without my mat. I know I could use a bamboo placemat, but I’ve misplaced those also. So, here is how to roll sushi without a mat. Enjoy!
Step 1. On a flat surface, lay down a kitchen towel, plastic wrap on top of the kitchen towel, and your sushi wrap (dull side down) on top of the plastic wrap.
Step 2. Cover your hands in olive oil, so the rice won’t stick to your hands. Spread your cooked sushi rice (I completely cooled mine in the fridge before adding) evenly on top of wrap. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Step 3. Flip the wrap over, rice side down, and add your filling ingredients. For this roll, I used cucumber slices and I blended crab, shrimp, and cream cheese together in a food processor.
Step 4. Bring the plastic wrap up and gently tuck the roll under. Do not squeeze the roll at this point. Continue using the plastic wrap to roll the sushi wrap all the way.
Step 5. Using the kitchen towel, place it over the roll and squeeze and pull to make the roll tight. Continue doing this until the roll is as tight as you can get it, without breaking the roll.
Step. 6. Place roll on cutting board and cut into 1-inch pieces. Serve with pickled ginger or wasabi sauce or both.