Happy (almost) spring! To celebrate the end of winter, the Longoria family celebrated Setsubun, a Japanese holiday that marks the beginning of spring in Japan. There are many parts of Setsubun that sound fun to participate in, especially throwing beans at a family member dressed in masks (to scare away the demon Oni). But since it is just Daniel, Moses, Atticus and I, we decided that we would skip the bean throwing this year and make a traditional Eho-Maki.
Eho-Maki means "the lucky direction roll", which explains more about how to eat the sushi rather than what it is...so let us start with the recipe.
My friend Yoko uses the following ingredients when making her family's Eho-Maki:
Crab legs (I just used carrots)
Egg (I made fried tofu spears)
Daikon Radishes (I found these at our Asian grocery store, but they are GIANT and super expensive...I liked the taste, sort of pickled, but I knew Daniel would not like it)I have never made my own sushi rice before, but it was easy and tasted just like a restaurant version.
To make 4 medium-sized sushi roll portions of rice:
1 1/3 cups short grained white rice
2 cups water
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 1/2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
Wash the rice until the water runs clear. Combine rice and water and bring to a boil. After the rice has reached a boil, turn the temperature to low and cover. Cook for 20 minutes. Cool rice for 10-15 minutes. While rice is cooking combine the remaining ingredients into a small bowl and microwave for 30 seconds until sugar is dissolved. Pour mixture over the cooled rice. Stir until the liquid is well incorporated into the rice.
The next step, anyone can do...spoon the rice over the nori sheet, add your favorite additions and attempt to roll them up. Yoko did this much better than I. Mine looked reminiscent of a burrito.
Here is the fun part: every year Japan has a lucky direction (something to do with the zodiac sign), this year is south-east. After you have given up trying to make your sushi roll pretty, and decide just to eat it, you hold the roll toward the lucky direction and make a wish while you eat the ENTIRE roll of sushi without talking.
We found this to be impossible, so post wish-making, we decided to cut it up. My only suggestions would be to know which brands of nori are the best (ours was too fishy for me) and make sure you have wasabi and ginger on hand!
Nom nom, take that Oni!