California Roll – The Gateway Sushi

Ah, summertime and the living is easy.  In between play dates, lazy afternoons at the pool,  assorted day trips and movies, my son and I ducked into the local Barnes and Noble to escape the summer heat.  Ignoring my gentle suggestions and the selections on his 6th grade reading list, my kid walked out of the book store with James Patterson’s Middle School, Get Me Out of Here! and. . . a sushi making kit.

My son loves sushi.  Okay, technically he loves California rolls, which perhaps for the true sushi aficionado is not really considered sushi; like the fortune cookie, the California roll is an American invention.  Created in the early 1970s by a sushi chef in Los Angeles, it consists of crab, avocado and cucumber wrapped in rice and nori (seaweed) and sprinkled with sesame seeds.  But, I like to think of it as a gateway sushi – if he’s enjoying this now, maybe as he gets older he’ll move onto a tuna roll or some hardcore sashimi.  Anything that expands a kid’s culinary horizons is fine by me, and $10 is a small price to pay for his delighted enthusiasm.

The Sushi Making Kit from Mud Puddle Inc. provides the essentials – recipe book, rolling mat, rice paddle, and two sets of chopsticks.  Most of the  ingredients are readily available at the supermarket in the Asian foods section, and I found the crab sticks at our neighborhood produce market.  The sushi rice is easy to prepare, and once all the ingredients are cut up and the rice has cooled,  you’re (literally) ready to roll.

My son quickly took charge, and following the easy instructions, here’s how it turned out:

The ingredients

Spreading the rice on the nori

Adding the filling

Roooolling along. . .

A little chunky but good!

Ready for slicing; he used a serrated knife

Nice!

Ah, summertime – and the sushi is easy!

All photos courtesy of Mom Meets Blog