Sushi Making



Sushi Making

Sushi is a Japanese dish that traditionally consists of cooked vinegared rice combined with other ingredients, usually raw fish, seafood or vegetables. The word sushi actually derives from the Japanese word for sour or acid and refers to the short-grain rice which is cooked and seasoned with sushi vinegar. Once the rice is made, you can then use it to make lots of different types of sushi that are popular in Japanese cuisine.

Ingredients needed to make sushi

Sushi is traditionally made with three main ingredients: rice, seafood, and vegetables. The rice is usually vinegar-flavoured, and the seafood and vegetables are typically raw. To make sushi at home, you'll need to start by gathering these ingredients:

  • Sushi Rice – Specifically short grain rice as it retains starch better than longer-grained varieties helping to bind the sushi together.
  • Sushi vinegar – A blend of mirin, vinegar, salt and sugar the sushi vinegar gives the rice its distinctive flavour and helps to bind the sushi rice together.
  • Nori Sheets – The most well-known types of sushi (maki rolls) are wrapped in nori sheets, so they’re a must-have if you’re just starting to learn what type of sushi you like.
  • Your choice of fillings – The most common filling for sushi is raw fish but you can also experiment with a range of seafood or fresh vegetables.
  • Soy sauce - for dipping your sushi before eating it        
  • Optional extras – Traditionally you would also serve sushi with pickled ginger and wasabi paste to cleanse the palate between bites.

Different types of sushi

When it comes to sushi making, there are three main types of sushi: nigiri, maki, and temaki.

  • Nigiri is made by placing a piece of fish or other ingredients on top of rice that has been formed into a small oval.
  • Maki is made by rolling rice and other ingredients inside of seaweed paper, then slicing the roll into bite-sized pieces.
  • Temaki, also known as hand roll sushi, is a type of sushi that is rolled by hand into a cone shape. It is usually made with nori seaweed on the outside and rice, fish, and vegetables on the inside. The fillings and toppings can be varied to suit your taste.
  • Uramaki is  wrapped in seaweed, with the rice on the outside. It is often called inside-out sushi.

Alternative types of sushi

In recent years these two types of sushi have become more popular;

  • Tempura sushi is a type of fried sushi where the rice and fillings are coated in a light batter and then fried until crispy. This type of sushi is often served with a sweet and sour sauce.
  • Vegetarian sushi is not traditionally Japanese but it is a type of sushi made without fish. It can be made with a variety of ingredients, including avocado, cucumber, sweet potato, and tofu.

Is sushi always made with raw fish?

While sushi is often associated with raw fish, it can actually be made with a variety of ingredients, both cooked and raw. The most important thing to remember when making sushi is to use fresh, high-quality ingredients. And if you're using raw fish, be sure to purchase it from a reputable source and have it properly frozen before using. 

Where do I start with sushi making?

Start sushi making with our sushi making kits. The sushi making kits include the traditional Japanese sushi ingredients you need for perfect sushi – sushi rice, sushi vinegar, nori seaweed sheets – as well as the extra essentials to make your sushi perfect. 

Once making sushi is second nature, top up your store cupboard with more sushi supplies: a wooden hangiri rice barrel and rice paddle for mixing the rice, or pickled daikon for an unusual sushi filling. And when you want to take your sushi making to the next level, try a finer grade of sushi rice, taste different Kikkoman soy sauces – including the purest marudaizu – or artisan aged soy sauce.

Read more about making sushi rice with Reiko Hashimoto, our introduction to How to Make Maki Sushi, and even make Korean kimbap rolls.

Recipes to Try

  • Nigiri guide

    An Introduction to Nigiri

  • Guide to Maki Sushi

    An Introduction to Maki Sushi

  • An Introduction to Sashimi

    An Introduction to Sashimi

  • uramaki guide

    An Introduction to Uramaki Sushi

  • How To Make Sushi: Easy Maki Rolls Step-By-Step

    How To Make Sushi: Easy Maki Rolls Step-By-Step

    • 45 minutes

    • Easy

  • A Guide to Choosing the Best Soy Sauce

    A Guide to Choosing the Best Soy Sauce