Braised mushrooms can be kept in the refrigerator or freezer to save time.
Makes about 36 pieces.
1 quantity sushi rice
6-8 braised shiitake mushrooms
(see recipe for Tossed Sushi)
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 green cucumber
1 small piece pickled radish
125 g/4 oz raw tuna, bonito or kingfish (optional)
1 teaspoon prepared wasabi
6 sheets nori (dried laver seaweed)
Prepare sushi rice. Slice braised mushrooms into strips.
Beat eggs with salt and sugar, cook in lightly oiled pan like a flat omelette. Cool, then cut in thin strips. Peel cucumber thinly, leaving a trace of green. Cut lengthways in strips the size of a pencil. Drain the pickled radish and cut in thin strips. If using fish, remove skin and bones, cut the fish in pencil strips and smear with wasabi. Toast sheets of nori to crisp them by passing back and forth over a gas flame or electric hotplate a few times.
Put a sheet of nori on a sudare (bamboo mat), or on a clean napkin. Divide the rice into 6 equal portions and spread one portion evenly over two-thirds of the sheet of nori, starting at the end nearest you. In neat lines across the middle of the rice stack a combination of ingredients.
Roll up the sushi in the mat, keeping firm pressure on the filling so that a neatly packed cylinder results. Let the rolls rest for 10 minutes before cutting into about 6 pieces. Arrange, cut side up, on a tray decorated with leaves.
Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)