Once you know how to make basic sushi rice , you can start making sushi at home. However, I don't consider the regular sushi-on-a-ball type of sushi (aka nigiri zushi) that you get at a sushi restaurant to be that good for the home cook. Making that type of sushi is notoriously difficult - sushi chefs, or itamae, go through years of training. Rather than struggle to get that just-right balance between rice ball and topping, or neta, I stick to the kind of sushi that is easy to make at home.
One of these is hand rolled sushi (temaki-zushi). This is great party food, since the rolls look so pretty and of course, they can be eaten without utensils. You can either make the handrolls ahead and put them on a buffet, or - much better - have a "roll your own sushi" party. We even have this sometimes just for dinner, since it is so easy to make.
Handrolled sushi (temaki-zushi)
Prepare the fillings. Here are some suggestions, both traditional and non-traditional:
You certainly don't have to have all of these ingredients. Just choose a few and mix and match.
Prepare the nori seaweed. To crisp it up a bit, fan it over a low flame (if you have gas burners) or a medium hot plate (if you have electric burners), flipping it over back and forth. Be careful not to let it catch on fire! Cut the nori sheets into half or quarters, with kitchen scissors.
To make each handroll: Place the cut up sheet on nori in your hand. Place a little rice on it - you only need a couple of tablespoons worth. Make a dent in the middle and put whatever fillings suit your fancy in. Try to balance the meaty (such as tuna) with the crispy (such as cucumber or daikon radish). Make your own California roll, by combining avocado, crabmeat and cucumber. Or how about a New York roll, with smoked salmon, cream cheese and onion slices? You can either roll horozontally (to make a tube), or roll into a cone, as is shown in the picture, which is prettier.
For a "make your own" spread, put the sushi rice in a large plate or bowl, put the ingredients on several plates or individual plates. Give each guest a pair of chopsticks, a spoon, a stack of nori seaweed squares, a dipping plate for soy sauce, and a larger plate to hold their rolls.
Serve with a good miso soup , perhaps a salad, and plenty of beer and hot green tea.