If you've ever attempted to roll your own sushi, you know it requires a pinch of practice and a shake of patience. Sushi lovers would argue it's worth the effort, but few would say it's easy to master. Whether you're tackling sushi rolls, also known as maki, which feature seaweed stuffed with rice and other ingredients, or uramaki, another common type of sushi where rice is pressed around a roll of seaweed and fillings, the technique is a form of art.
If you're looking for an entry-level version of sushi making, look to temaki, a fast and easy way to enjoy the same fresh ingredients found in other forms of sushi without the hassle of bamboo mats and concerns over the roll holding together. Temaki is a hand-rolled sushi made by layering fillings on a nori sheet and then rolling it into a cone. The idea is simple -- lay out the ingredients and let guests build their own dinner. It's a casual form of sushi often served at home in Japan, and it's easy to adapt to a crowd.
What To Put On A Temaki-Inspired Board
Envision the ingredients on your favorite sushi menu to get the flavor of options for your temaki-inspired board. To start, check the pantry for nori (seaweed) sheets. Also, prepare some traditional vinegared rice, which creates the base for many types of sushi. Then, source some protein options. This is where creativity takes hold. Work with what you have or what you can find. Raw tuna, salmon, or yellowtail are traditional options. Cooked seafood such as smoked salmon, octopus, crab, eel (unagi), and shrimp tempura are also popular. For a vegetarian spin, serve up marinated tofu.
Layer thinly sliced vegetables into the mix with carrots, cucumber, radishes, microgreens, red or green cabbage, lettuce, and peppers. Slice a perfectly ripe avocado, display a bowl of colorful roe, and provide the ubiquitous sushi accouterment trio of soy sauce, wasabi, and pickled ginger.
With all your ingredients prepped, organize them on a platter or in a serving tray with compartments. Like a well-designed charcuterie board, lay out your temaki-inspired board by dispersing groups of fillings in a colorful display. Make ingredients easy to access with serving forks and spoons. Although you can provide a surface for prepping and rolling and plates to serve it on, temaki can be rolled in the palm of your hand and eaten immediately without dirtying any dishes or picking up the chopsticks.
Other Ways To Enjoy A Temaki-Inspired Board
With all the ingredients prepped and ready to eat, your guests can prepare their version of the perfect temaki. While that might take the shape of a cone, it can also be rolled any way that works for you or folded in half for quick consumption. In addition to temaki, guests can skip the nori and dish up nigiri sushi instead, which is a clump of rice topped with fresh or cooked seafood or tofu. Larger appetites can use a larger sheet of nori to roll ingredients into a sushi burrito, while those who prefer to use a bowl and utensils can place ingredients over a bed of rice for a dish known as chirashi.
However you layer your ingredients, a temaki-inspired board provides an opportunity to enjoy the fresh and healthy offerings sushi is known for. Since you can prep most of the ingredients ahead of time, it's a great way to pull together a casual meal that encourages participation and interaction amongst your guests while taking the pressure off yourself as host.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.