sushi balls

June 10, 2012

These little morsels of heavenly, healthy finger food are fabulous for party appetizers, for a light dinner with steamed kale and smoked tofu on the side, or as a snack mid-afternoon when the munchies hit. I’m also thinking that they’d be awesome for a road trip. We have a few ahead of us this summer and I already can’t wait to pull over beside a little northern stream and eat these for lunch instead of being forced to pull over at a roadside diner or the standard highway mega-chains. Balls to that! I’m having modern-day traveling sushi packed full of carrots, green onion, and seaweed to go.

2 cups sushi-style rice

1/3 cup rice vinegar

2 tbsps sugar

1 1/2 tsps sea salt

1/4 cup seaweed, dulse, hijiki or seaweed of choice, chopped finely

2 carrots, grated finely

5 green onions, chopped finely

1/4 cup black and/or white sesame seeds

1/4 cup tamari

sesame oil

Rinse the sushi rice and and then cook according to directions.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl mix together rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Add carrots, green onions, and seaweed. Mix and set aside.

Toast the sesame seeds in a skillet over medium-high heat until they are golden brown and their nutty flavour starts to come out. Stir constantly to make sure you don’t burn them. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool when done.

When rice is done, turn off the heat and let it sit for about 10 minutes to cool. After 10 minutes or so, place rice in the bowl with the vinegar, carrots, seaweed etc. Stir gently but consistently for about 3 – 5 minutes to let the steam escape. At this point you can leave the rice to cool for 1 – 2 hours or you can start to form the balls immediately.

To form the balls, take a spoonful of rice and roll it out between your hands. It helps if your hands are damp (it is sticky rice after all!) so keep a bowl of water nearby to occasionally wet your hands so the rice doesn’t stick to you. Form all the balls and then roll the balls in the sesame seeds to lightly coat them. Refrigerate the balls until you are ready to serve. Let them sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving.

Set them out beside a small bowl of tamari and a few drops of sesame oil for dipping.

7 Responses to “sushi balls”

  1. Allison Says:

    Yum, these look adorable! I usually try to avoid refrigerating Japanese rice balls (or sushi rice in general), because it tends to dry out, but maybe that wasn’t a problem for you with all of those tasty ingredients mixed in throughout the rice?

  2. emmycooks Says:

    Those would be so popular with my kids–I think they’d love both making them and eating them!

  3. These are too cute! And what a great appetizer. I never seem to be able to get the right consistency for sushi rice. Any tips?

  4. Val,
    The word on the street is that for good sushi rice:
    – be sure to use Japanese short-grained rice
    – wash your rice to get rid of the starchy powder that clings to the grains
    – follow a 1-to-1 ratio for sushi rice to water and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it has reached a boil, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting, and cook the rice for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn off the heat entirely and let the rice sit and steam in the pot, covered, for 10 more minutes
    – mix the seasoned vinegar with the cooked rice in a sushi-oke or an unvarnished wooden bowl, but you can also use a wide shallow glass or ceramic bowl. Don’t use an aluminum bowl
    – practice makes perfect
    Hope that helps! And let me know how it goes.

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