Sushi hand rolls (Temaki-zushi)

Sushi hand rolls

Sushi hand rolls are paper thin sheets of nori (a special type of seaweed) wrapped in a cone shape around sticky vinegared rice and various seafood and vegetable fillings. They can be eaten as a meal in themselves, or in smaller amounts as an appetizer, and they make great party food (guests can even choose their own favorite fillings and roll their own).

When we make sushi hand rolls at home we rarely use raw fish. It’s much more likely to be smoked salmon, cooked shrimp, crab (sometimes real crab, sometimes crab sticks), and abundant amounts of vegetables like cucumber, avocado, scallions, mushrooms and carrots.

Other alternative fillings we’ve used include eggs (made into an omelet and cut into strips), sesame seeds and tofu.

Sushi hand rolls, like other types of sushi, are a great source of many health-giving nutrients. The nori provides plenty of iodine, folate, calcium and magnesium. Salmon is a great source of omega-3s, which are heart-protective and have anti-inflammatory properties. And the vegetables contain valuable vitamins and minerals as well as plenty of dietary fiber.

The nori, fish and fibrous vegetables also have another health benefit. They slow down the digestion of the white rice, which prevents blood sugar and insulin swings.

Sushi hand rolls
serves 4
Sushi hand rolls are a fun and delicious change from regular sushi. You can make the hand rolls in advance, or simply lay out all the ingredients on a table and let your guests create their own rolls with their favorite fillings. If you've never made sushi hand rolls before you might find them a bit finicky to roll at first — but we can assure you that with a little practice it becomes a lot easier. And it's well worth the effort to get it right.
Cooked sushi rice (for recipe click here)
10 nori sheets — cut in half
7 oz (200g) sliced smoked salmon
24 cold cooked shrimp — peeled and deveined
½ cucumber — peeled, deseeded and cut into 3-inch strips
2 avocados — peeled and cut into strips
1 carrot — peeled and grated
2 scallions, green part only — cut into 3-inch pieces
Wasabi paste
Pickled ginger (gari)
Japanese soy sauce

1. PREPARE the sushi rice and the filling ingredients.
2. LAY a halved nori sheet shiny side down on a large plate. Using moistened hands, place a ping pong ball sized amount of the rice on the right side of the nori sheet, then flatten down slightly.
3. SMEAR a small amount of wasabi diagonally across the rice (be sparing with wasabi, it's hot!).
4. PLACE your chosen filling ingredients diagonally on top of the rice so they point towards the bottom right corner of the nori. (Be sure not to overfill your roll.)
5. FOLD the top right corner of the nori over the rice and filling ingredients.
6. PICK the hand roll up and wrap the left side of the nori tightly around the rice and fillings to form a cone shape, leaving a small flap.
7. MOISTEN the flap of nori with water and seal the cone. Leave the rolls for a minute or two before eating to let the rice and fillings soften the nori.
8. SERVE the sushi hand rolls with Japanese soy sauce (shoyu) for dipping. Cleanse your palate between hand rolls with a little gari (pickled ginger).