Saturday, November 20, 2010

Salmon and Shrimp Sushi, Sashimi Platter

Yes, I do take requests!
     I made this sushi platter for a request by my friend Renee.  I admit, I am not a licensed sushi chef but I have learned some of the techniques over the years.  I have served a petite sushi as an amuse bouche complimentary appetizer in a few fine restaurants years ago.
     Sushi is tradition.  Respect and a high degree of skill is what it takes to learn how to make sushi.  It is better if I refer my readers to a pro sushi chef for the sushi technique education.  Not all sushi is raw.  Some items are always cooked.  Sushi quality fish is not easy to come by in grocery stores.  Two types of fish that are fast moving predators are the safest fish to eat raw.  Salmon and tuna.
     Almost any fresh caught fish from cold ocean water is good for sushi.  Tropical fish carry dangerous parasites and do not qualify as sushi quality.  Salmon was the easy choice for sushi in my area and it is always fresh.
     A very sharp knife is required to make sushi.  A stylish sushi knife is a good choice but I made my sushi with a razor sharp ten inch chef knife.
     Sushi rice is required.  Sushi rice remains sticky when cooked.  A sprinkle of a little bit of sweet rice wine vinegar is all you need to flavor the rice.
     A bamboo rolling mat is needed for making sushi rolls.  Simply pat out warm sushi rice on a bamboo mat, sprinkle with sesame seed and black sesame seed then flip the rice over on the bamboo mat.  Set long thick pieces of salmon on the rice and use the mat to roll the sushi into a log shape.  Use a wet knife to slice the roll into pieces.
     Dampen a sheet of dried pressed seaweed and lay it on a bamboo mat.  Spread sushi rice over the seaweed.  Place long thick strips of salmon on the rice.  Use the bamboo mat to roll the sushi.  Slice into pieces with a wet knife.
     For the other sushi on the plate, there is a technique of using the index finger and thumb of both hands to shape a perfect rice base for a seafood topping.
     The shrimp are poached and then glazed with a simple sugar and soy sauce teriyaki sauce.  Simply a slice a piece of salmon is placed on the rice base for the other sushi.
     Thin slice the select salmon for the sashimi.  Fan the sashimi on the plate.
     Reconstitute a piece of salt packed seaweed in hot water.  Sprinkle a little bit of sushi vinegar on the seaweed.  Drape the seaweed on the plate.  Garnish the seaweed with reconstituted dried baby anchovies.
     Boil a small amount of buckwheat noodles.  Serve the noodles chilled with sushi vinegar, thin sliced green onion and sesame oil.
     Garnish the plate with pickled ginger slices and wasabi.
     This is an easy sushi and sashimi plate to make.  With practice, fancy sushi rolls become easier.  Learning the classic traditional and regional Japanese sushi is essential.  This is only the second full sushi platter I have ever made but it turned out OK!
     Simplicity and clean presentation are part of sushi tradition but modern sushi can look very artistic.  Remember, work quickly on clean surfaces so no contamination of the raw fish occurs.  A complete platter should only takes minutes to prepare.  Safety and cleanliness cannot be stressed enough when making sushi.  I will make more sushi for my recipe blog when I move back home to Las Vegas.  In Las Vegas, a wide variety of certified sushi quality seafood can be purchased at a common grocery store.  Thats because there is about 500 sushi restaurants in Las Vegas and the demand is high.  Consider this a beginners sushi recipe....LOL  More sushi for you Renee!  I hope you like this platter.  WASABI!  ...  Shawna

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