You don't have to be a sushi chef to throw an epic sushi party! Trust us, it's not that difficult, and there is no wrong way to do it. You'll get the hang of rolling the nori (seaweed wrappers) just after a couple of times, and you don't even need any fancy tools to do it (plastic wrap or foil work just fine).
You could even prepare the rice and fillings in bowls and have your guests do the rolling, but here we will show you how we make the rolls ahead for your guests. In addition, we're sharing some of our favorite side dish recipes to serve along side all of the tasty homemade rolls.
P.S. Don't forget the chopsticks!
Here's what you'll need:
Sushi Rice, Recipe below
Fillings, Recipes below
Easy Spicy Peanut Noodles (Recipe Here)
Coconut Lemongrass Quinoa Salad with Mango, Cashews, and Mint (Recipe Here)
Sea Salt Edamame
Step 1 - Prepare the rice
Makes 8-10 rolls
4 cups sushi or short grain rice
4 cups water
4 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
2 Tbsp Kosher salt
In a strainer, rinse the rice under cold water until water runs clear. Drain.
Place the rice and 4 cups of water into a large pan over high heat. Bring to a boil. Once it begins to boil, stir once, and reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes.
Transfer rice to a large bowl and toss well with vinegar and salt. Allow to cool to room temp before using.
Step 2 - Prepare the fillings (4 of our favorites)
Dice 4 oz sashimi grade tuna into small 1/4 inch pieces. Mix with 1/2 tsp sesame oil,
3 tsp sriracha, 2 scallions, and black (and or white) sesame seeds.
In a small bowl mix 8 oz cooked crab meat with 3 Tbsp mayo or sriracha mayo,
a couple dashes of soy sauce, and scallions.
Cut 3 oz thinly sliced smoked salmon into 1/2 inch strips with
1 1/4 inch strip cream cheese, and 1 1/4 inch cucumber slice.
Peel one ripe (but firm) avocado, and slice into 1/4 in think slices.
Squeeze lime or lemon juice to prevent browning. Roll with sliced red bell pepper,
roasted portobello mushrooms, and roasted sweet potatoes.
Step 3 - Roll the sushi
The key is to roll the sushi tightly, so it doesn't fall apart, but you don't want to smash the rice, so you must be gentle at the same time. If you don't have a bamboo mat, use a piece of plastic wrap or foil.
Also, the rice will stick to your hands, so prepare a small bowl with equal parts water and rice vinegar to moisten your fingers while you work.
Begin by laying a sheet of nori, shiny side down on the mat (or plastic wrap/foil). Wet your fingers and spread 3/4 cup of rice evenly onto the nori sheet. Sprinkle the rice with sesame seeds.
Now turn the sheet over so the rice side is facing down. Alternatively, you can also keep it right side up and make rolls with the nori on the outside, like in the photo above.
Next, place a line of your filling of choice at the bottom end of the nori sheet. Grab the bottom edge of the bamboo mat (or plastic wrap/foil) while keeping the fillings in place with your fingers, roll into a tight cylinder. Continue to roll forward while keeping gentle pressure on the roll. Give the roll one final gentle squeeze.
Using a very sharp knife, cut the roll in half then each into 4 pieces. Clean the knife with a damp towel every few slices, as needed.
This salad is what quinoa dreams are made of. So many beautiful flavors, textures...and of course COLORS! It's the perfect accompaniment to a sushi party, weeknight dinner, or luncheon with the ladies.
1 cup quinoa
2 cups coconut milk
4-5 large mint leaves, torn
1/3 cup cashews, roughly chopped
1 ripe mango, pitted and sliced
1 ripe avocado, pitted and sliced
2 scallions, green and white parts chopped
Sesame seeds to garnish
For the dressing:
2 Tbsp lemongrass paste or minced lemongrass from stalk
2 Tbsp fresh squeezed lime
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp freshly grated ginger
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 Tbsp honey
Kosher salt, to taste
Rinse the quinoa under cold water for about 30 seconds. In a medium pot, add rinsed quinoa, coconut milk, and a generous pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes, until quinoa is cooked and has absorbed most of the liquid. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Allow to cool.
Meanwhile prepare the dressing. Remove the outer layer of lemongrass and trim off the tough ends. Crush the salt with the back of your knife to release flavor, then roughly chop it. Place lemongrass, lime, olive oil, ginger, garlic, and honey in a small blender and combine until smooth. Taste, and add another squeeze of lime, if needed. Season well with salt.
Once quinoa has slightly cooled, toss with mint and cashews. Transfer to a serving bowl, drizzle with dressing. Top with mango, avocado, and scallions. Serve with additional mint sprigs and lime wedge, if desired.
Is it weird that we both have serious beet cravings? Like, we need them in our diet almost as badly as we need chocolate. *Almost.* We can't be alone?
Thankfully this salad is easy to put together because it's on our crave list, and frankly we could eat it every week. Super fresh and incrediby simple ingredients come together to create a bold flavors. We hope you love it as much as we do!
3-4 medium beets
1 blood orange
1 ripe, but tender avocado
2 oz goat or feta (in the brine), crumbled
2 Tbsp toasted walnuts (candied walnuts are great too)
6-8 mint leaves, torn
kosher salt and pepper
olive oil to finish
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp lemon juice, plus 1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp dijon
2 tsp honey
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt and pepper
For the salad:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash beets and individually wrap in foil. Roast beets until tender when pierced with a knife, about 45 minutes.
Meanwhile peel orange, discarding all white pith and skins. Slice orange segments and set aside. Peel and pit avocado. Slice in half lengthwise, and then slice against the width into about 10 slices. Set aside.
Once beets are cool enough to handle, peel skins off using a paper towel. Slice into ¼ inch slices.
Arrange beets on a plate and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle dressing over top and repeat with oranges and avocado. Top with feta or goat cheese, walnuts, and mint. Finish by spooning leftover dressing over all ingredients.
For the dressing:
Combine all ingredients into a glass jar and shake well until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
We developed this recipe for a ladies event a few years back and people went absolutely crazy over it. After the event was over we both went home with leftover pea pesto and texted each other for the next week comparing ways we used it. There were definitely a couple of pasta and prosciutto nights, I’m pretty sure we both spread it on roasted cauliflower, and a few eggs and avocado toasts were had. We love the versatility!
4 naan (or flatbreads)
2 cups ricotta cheese
Pea Pesto, see below
Fresh Basil, chopped Parmigiana Reggiano, freshly shaved
10 oz frozen peas thawed, or fresh blanched peas
3/4 cup Parmigiana Reggiano, freshly grated
8 fresh mint leaves
2 Tbsp pine nuts, toasted
1 garlic clove, minced
1/3 – 1⁄2 cup olive oil
1-2 Tbsp lemon juice, fresh squeezed
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place naan on baking tray and place in oven for 7-10 minutes, or just until golden and slightly crisp.
Meanwhile make the pea pesto by pulsing together in a food processor the peas, Parmesan, mint, pine nuts, and garlic. Slowly add olive oil until combined. Season well with salt and pepper, and add squeeze of lemon juice. Taste and add more olive oil, lemon, or salt, if needed.
Spread layer of ricotta cheese on each naan, and sprinkle with salt. Top with pea pesto, fresh basil leaves, and freshly grated Parmesan.