Japan Sushi Roll Mold /Maker (Small)[amazon.com] I got this for $2.88 shipped. These smaller rolls are actually pretty damn good. Makes a ton, and you can fit more things inside, i've done up to 3 ingredients when others say you can only fit 1.
I'm probably never going to use the larger one again as a 2" wide sushi roll is quite big... and uses a ton of rice. Up to you, but just wanted to let you guys know what I did when I was looking for a sushi roller.
I have the second one, paid about the same price in some japanese shop and really happy with it.
What is the biggest difference with the OP's one ? Just curious.
What's the best place to get sushi grade Tuna or salmon? Do you just use the stuff of the grocery store or is there a good online retailer? Possibly a organic food market?
For tuna, I tend to check around a few stores near my apartment and go with the first one that has a good looking cut. Most of the butchers have no problem giving you a thin slice to taste first to ensure it has both a good texture and flavor. If it wasn't frozen/thawed properly, it will get a bad texture and the only way I know for sure to have a good taste is sampling. For salmon, it is fairly difficult to find a reliable fish monger in NE Ohio. When getting ready for a larger party where I want to ensure I have good meats available I tend go to one of several markets in the area that sell sushi and buying a few pounds in advance. They just increase their next order and keep my cuts set aside for me.
'Sushi Grade' is a bit misleading here in the states, as there is no legal meaning to the term. The dangers involved in eating raw fish vs cooked fish mainly comes from parasites that live in the fish but can give people issues. Tuna is often used due to a low risk of parasites while salmon is one of the more dangerous fish for this reason. There are a few approaches to dealing with the parasites...
1) Fishing boats that specialize in high quality use a flash freezing process causing significantly less degradation to the fish. Being frozen at 0F for 48 hours is the standard used to ensure all parasites have been killed. The fish can then safely be slowly thawed and used.
2) Traditional freezing to 0F for 48 hours will also kill the parasites, however you more significantly degrade the quality of the fish.
3) Inspection via a light... I can't remember the type of light, but there are inspection lights made that allow you to see if there are any parasites in the cut of fish allowing you to discard contaminated cuts.
4) Cure or mix with wasabi. One of the reasons 'spicy' rolls are popular, is that wasabi (real wasabi, not the artificially spiced pastes often labeled as wasabi) will effectively sanitize the meat. A spicy roll is simply finely chopped fish mixed with wasabi and sometimes other spices to make a paste. Smoking the meat is another great way to ensure it is safe while still tasting great.
Why do you need the mat? I've been using my hands, and it seems to work fine.
You can roll tighter without risk of tearing the nori or stabbing your finger into it. Rolls with softer filling (avocado, fish) I have done bare handed plenty of times, but firmer (daikon, carrot, peppers) rolls tend to rip on me.
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