Um, you know what’s fun? Sushi. You know what’s REALLY fun? Sushi made of FREE STUFF!
I’m a Foodbuzz featured publisher, cause I’m legit. From time to time, we get free stuff as part of the Tastemaker program. Earlier this week, it means I got a delivery of my choice of $30 worth of groceries from Asianfoodgrocer.com.
Here’s what it got me!
Wrappers and nori.
Ginger candy, mango custardy/jelloey stuff, and “melon bread” (had to try it!)
Miso paste and fish sauce.
Finally, serious Japanese staples:
Tofu, dried shiitakes, and udon noodles!
With this bounty, I knew I had to share. What better than a make-your-own sushi night with the girlfriends?!
I started with homemade miso soup!
Roughly following the proportions in this recipe, I used 6 cups of water, 1/4 cup miso paste, and 2/3 of the block of tofu. Lacking dashi, I instead used some of the hot water to rehydrate one of the dried mushrooms and let that broth flavor the soup (and I chopped up the shroom and added that!)
The final soup was gorgeous and tasty and restaurant caliber!
Now for my sushi assembly line.
Seaweed and rice (all I had was brown rice, but I found this awesome sounding recipe, which I quadrupled) :
Assembly was done with a lot of smearage. Amy, the only person in the group who’d done this previously, was key to demonstrating:
Marisa looked on in awe:
Using a spoon to get a big scoopful of rice and then a fork to actually shmear it was key.
For fillings, since there were 3 vegetarians attending, I went heavy on the plants:
Clockwise from the top, that’s carrots; cucs; edamame tossed in chili sauce; mango, and broccoli slaw made with salt, rice vin, and Sriracha.
The all veggie rolls were beautiful and colorful.
The proud artiste, with our first successful roll:
Straight up, rolling up sushi, particularly without the benefit of a bamboo mat, can be hard. There was a lot of team effort. The roomie stepped in, after coming back from work. What a champ!
For those of us who WILL eat something with a face, I was too squeamish and scared for raw fish, so I went for TJ’s smoked salmon:
If I do say so myself, the first roll I made (salmon and cuc!) looked pretty good.
We also had a nice condiment bar, with homemade wasabi and pilfered individual soy sauce packets (for easy single servings):
Everyone relaxed and chatted, and I got into a nice roll-making zone. The broccoli slaw was the ingredient that I found the most surprisingly delicious. The mango and edamame also got rave reviews.
I felt so creative and artistic!
The mango dofu delight was like jello, and frankly a little weird. The ginger candy was, a bit disappointingly, hard candy and not chews. But tasted SOOOOOOO GINGERY!
And the melon bread looked like a sliced up brain :D
A good time was had by all!
I was totally psyched to get this free opportunity, courtesy of Foodbuzz and Asian Food Grocer, and I was even happier to use the bounty to get together with some friends!