The California Roll is one of the most popular sushi styles in the U.S. It was invented in Vancouver, Canada in the seventies by the Japanese chef Hidekazu Tojo. He noticed that local clients didn’t like the raw fish and the seaweed wrapper traditionally used in sushi, so he decided to replace some of the ingredients and turn the roll inside out to hide the seaweed. At the time his restaurant had many visitors from Los Angeles who enjoyed the new kind of roll. The roll was given the name California roll. The rest is sushi history.
The below recipe is CehfDeveaux’s take on the California roll. Slightly changed from the original recipe, it tastes even better!
Step 1: chopping the crab sticks
Finely chop the crab sticks. 3 sticks are enough for 2 to 3 sushi rolls.
Step 2: adding mascarpone and mayonnaise
Put the chopped crab sticks in a mixing bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of mascarpone, 1 teaspoon of mayonnaise and 2 shakes of Aromat Seasoning. Mix well, using a spoon or fork.
Step 3: putting the rice on the nori sheet
Put half a nori sheet shiny side down on your cutting board. Spread 150 grams of cooked sushi rice over the sheet. Use your fingers to fluff out the rice and make sure to cover the whole sheet. Sprinkle roasted sesame seeds over the rice.
Click here to learn how to cook sushi rice.
Tip: slightly wet your hands to prevent rice sticking to them.
Step 4: adding the ingredients
Put a bamboo rolling mat inside a zip-lock bag. Flip the nori sheet over and place it on the mat. Spread the crab mixture on the middel of the nori sheet. Add 2 oblong avocado slices on one side and 2 oblong cucumber slices on the other side. Keep some space open on both sides of the nori sheet.
Fold the mat over the filling, while holding the filling in place with your thumbs. Pause a few times to firm up the roll by applying pressure along the length of the mat. Roll or fold the mat a bit further and again firm up the roll. Continue until you’re able to close the roll.
Then unroll the mat and set the sushi roll aside.
Step 6: covering the roll with cling film
After rolling, the California roll should look like this. Now cover the roll with cling film. Use the rolling mat to press the cling film against the roll. The cling film will fix the roll and the rice. This enables you to cut the roll in perfect sushi pieces.
Step 7: cutting the sushi roll
Hold your knife under the cold tap for a few seconds. This prevent rice from sticking to the blade. Cut the roll. Start with the heel of your knife and gently cut through the roll in one fluid motion.
To create slices of equal size, cut the sushi roll in half, then into quarters, and then into eighths. You may need to moisten the blade again if it begins to drag.
Make sure you’re using a really sharp knife. Chef Deveaux recommends using one of these Chef Knives.
The knife needs to be really sharp because using too much pressure while cutting will mess up your sushi roll.