I’m pretty sure Sushi, all types, are here to stay. It’s not a fad food, we’ve all pretty much incorporated sushi into our dining repertoire. Most of us no longer hear the word “Sushi” and think yuck raw fish!
California rolls seem to be the most popular type of sushi along with Nigiri tpes, that’s the one with a slice of raw fish or boiled shrimp pressed into sushi rice. And many of us still consider sushi a splurge at a sushi restaurant which admittedly can cost a pretty penny. (We’ve spent about $100 just to take the kids and grandkids out to Genki Sushi. That’s what happens when you all get carried away grabbing $3 dishes off the conveyor belt!) But really Sushi is very easy to make at home and doesn’t have to cost you your first born child!
After all what is sushi? It’s seasoned white rice, some type of seafood and or veggie that can be rolled into a sheet of dried seaweed. Easy right? Ok rolled sushi comes out better when rolled with a bamboo mat that one can buy at any asian market for less than $5. But what about making sushi without a mat or sheets of dried seaweed? That would be super easy sushi!
Well recently I came across sushi molds while wandering around Daiso, the Japanese version of a dollar store that recently opened not far from my house. I grabbed all the molds they had, they were just $1.50 (it’s not really a dollar store, it’s more like the $1.50+ store.) Anyway I got the molds (I gave some to my kids) and proceeded to make these Layered Spicy Shrimp Sushi. They’re actually “deconstructed” sushi as my grandson tells me. Best of all they are super easy to make!
Hey don’t worry if you can’t find the molds, you can use an empty can, old school but it works. Your sushi will be round instead of square, but it will work just fine. Just clean an empty can and remove both ends so that you end up with a tube. Place it on a plate and layer your sushi filling into the tube, when done just slip the can off. Be careful as the can edges will be sharp.
Anyway here’s my recipe. I make the rice in my rice cooker, which actually has a setting for sushi rice. But if you don’t have a rice cooker just cook the rice on the stove or however you usually make rice. My recipe makes a lot of Layered Sushi so if you don’t need as much just cut the recipe in half or in thirds.
3 Cups uncooked short grain rice, rinsed well
6 Cups Water (if cooking on the stove) if using a rice cooker follow the cooker’s directions
6 Tbs. Rice Vinegar
3 Tbs. Sugar
3 Tsp. Salt
3 Cups mashed avocado
3 Cups Cucumber diced in small cubes
3 Tbs. Lime Juice
1 1/2 Lbs. Cooked shrimp diced in small cubes
1/3 Cup Mayonnaise
3 Tbs. Sriracha Sauce
Furikaka for garnish
Wasabi Paste for garnish
Sriracha Sauce for garnish
Make rice in rice cooker and let cool
If making rice on stove top:
Bring rice and water to boil in large pot. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer about 20 minutes or until water has been absorbed and rice is tender. Let cool.
Mix Rice Vinegar, Sugar, and salt in a small bowl.
Place cooled cooked rice in a large bowl and gently fluff, you don’t want clumps of rice.
Gently fold vinegar mixture into rice. Set aside.
Mix together mashed avocado, cucumber, lime juice, and salt to taste. Set aside.
Mix together shrimp, mayo, and sriracha sauce. Set aside.
Scoop about 2 Tbl. of Green Layer into mold. Smooth top making sure it’s distributed evenly.
Scoop about 2 Tbs. of Shrimp Layer on top of Green Layer. Smooth top making sure shrimp mixture is evenly distributed.
Scoop about 4 Tbs. Sushi Rice on top of Shrimp Layer. Smooth top making sure rice is evenly distributed. Press rice layer down firmly into the other layers so that the layers will hold together.
Gently unmold and slide into serving dish. If using a can you will have to gently flip your sushi so that the Green layer is on top.
Sprinkle top with Furikake and drizzle with sriracha sauce. Squirt wasabi paste on plate and serve with soy sauce.
If you have extra sushi rice and shrimp no worries make my version of Nigiri Shrimp sushi by forming rice into rectangular cubes.
Butterfly the cooked shrimp and gently press on top of rice cube.
Sprinkle with Furikake.
Drizzle with sriracha and dot with wasabi and voila! You’ve got yummy Nigiri Sushi!
One of my favorite Asian dishes is Kalbi Short Ribs. I love the sweet salty taste of this barbecued beef. Recently the Korean barbecue place by my house added Spicy Kalbi to their menu, it’s delicious! Now I’ve been making my version of Kalbi for quite some time now. I use boneless short ribs and place them on bamboo skewers to make kabobs. It’s sort of my version of the now famous LA food truck offering they call Kalbi Tacos. Well I decided that I should make Spicy Korean Kalbi Skewers to add to our regular Sunday night barbecues.
To make this Spicy Korean Kalbi Skewers I used my basic kalbi marinade recipe and added a bit of Sriracha sauce to give it a bit of a kick. Super easy! I make plenty, at least 20 skewers, they go quickly. We never have left overs!
Served with steamed white rice and a side of spicy kim chee Spicy Korean Kalbi Skewers make a filling meal. By the way you can use boneless chicken thighs instead of short ribs.
Here’s the recipe!
3 lbs. thin cut boneless beef short ribs
1 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbls. finely ground fresh ginger
1/4 cup sesame oil
2 tbls. minced garlic
1 tbls. white sesame seeds
1 tbls. black sesame seeds available at Asian Markets
2 stalks green onions – chopped
1/4 cup sriracha sauce
Cut short ribs (or chicken thighs) into strips (you should be able to get 3 strips from each short rib)
Combine the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.
Mix until sugar dissolves.
Pour marinade into a large ziplock bag.
Place meat in bag and shake until all meat is coated with marinade.
Marinate in the fridge overnight.
Soak bamboo skewers in water for about 10 minutes.
Thread meat on to skewers.
Grill to desired doneness. About 3-5 minutes, don’t over cook.
Spicy Korean Kalbi Skewers
Sweet, salty beef or chicken kabobs with a bit of spice!
`This time of year with the holidays looming ahead I’m always looking for recipes to make my life easier. It’s a busy time for many of us and we still have to make time to prepare family meals on top of all the holiday preparations. So I look for recipes that are quick and simple to make, specially those where I can make and freeze some of the ingredients ahead of time.
Recently I remembered a childhood favorite, this “Torta” my grandmother made for me when I visited her. It’s been a very long time since I made this, I used to make an eggplant version “Torta Talong” to bring to my aunt at her nursing home, it was her favorite. But I’m allergic to eggplants so that wasn’t an option for me.
I did make this Torta for my family the other night and they loved it! I spruced it up by adding a Sriracha Ketchup Dipping Sauce and it was yummy. After I made it I remembered that I had this torta recently, in Barcelona! Over there instead of serving it as a meal they served is at the Tapas Bar, it was delicious with wine!
I made enough filling to freeze some for later use. Just thaw it out before you add the eggs and fry.
This recipe will make 3-4 6″ tortas.
What you may ask is a “Torta”? It’s really just an omelette, but you don’t fold it over.
Here’s my recipe, you can serve it as a meal or sliced in pie shaped wedges as an appetizer. I hope it makes a yummy addition to your table this season.
1 lb. ground beef
1 Small onion diced
1 Tbsp.. minced garlic
2 Small potatoes cooked & diced
1 Pinch each Salt & pepper to taste
2 Tbsp. Cooking oil
1/2 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp. sriracha sauce (if you don’t have sriracha you can use tobasco or any other hot sauce)