I’ve been meaning to do this how-to for a long time because it’s so easy, cute, and a little bit fancy.
Temari-zushi (or Temari-sushi) is a small ball-like sushi. (“temari” means “hand-ball”) It’s not really a seasonal food, but you can see a lot of temari-zushi in spring, around girl’s day (March 3rd) in Japan because temari-zushi is very colorful.
This is great for those who are not so sure about how to shape sushi rice. Temari-zushi is definitely NOT good for bento if you’re using raw fish. (I’ve used cooked shrimp and egg for bento #75: Totoro temari zushi ) But it’ll surely impress your friends if you serve this at a small party. I get a fresh sashimi block (a small block of fish) at a Japanese supermarket and cut it on my own. It’s a amazingly cheaper than buying prepared sushi. If you can’t find fish fresh enough to eat it raw, no need to be sad. You can use scrambled eggs, avocado, or shrimp, as shown below.
I’m not even sure you can call this a how-to, but I’ll post some pictures to show you how easy this is. (I took some photos in here a while ago, and forgot to put a watermark, but oh well.)
[How to make temari-zushi]
- salmon, tuna, shrimp, egg, avocado, etc…
- sushi rice
1. Make sushi rice! (see “How to make rice for sushi”) You have to use sushi rice for temari-zushi even if you aren’t using raw fish. Plain rice with food on top might taste very bland.
2. Put whatever you want on plastic wrap, put a little bit of sushi rice over, twist and close on the top and make a ball. That’s it!
If you have shrimp prepared for sushi (see “How to prepare shrimp for sushi”)…
If you have regular curled up shrimp…
You can just make it with scrambled eggs.
Or if you have a little more time, you can make an egg sheet (see “How to make an egg sheet”), and cut it into strips.
[Fish and avocado]
And you have plain temari-zushi! The one on a black plate was actually from a while ago. I was in a rush and didn’t really decorate them at the time.
But if you can, spend 5 minutes to put different kind of toppings on it to decorate it. You can put pretty much anything on it. It’s such a little amount you won’t really taste the topping that much, but it’ll make ordinary temari-zushi look like something you’ll see at a fancy restaurant. I used scallion and black lumpfish roe I got from IKEA but you can put seaweed cut out with a hole punch (or craft hold punch), carrot flower (see “How to make vegetable flowers”), a leaf of parsley, thinly sliced lemon, or even a tiny bit of wasabi or mustard or grated ginger! Using as many colors as you can.
The key to make a pretty temari-zushi is to make it small and let the food cover the most of rice. Use just enough rice so that if you see it from the top, you won’t see the rice. Also try making each ball the same size. I’ve seen some very cute arrangements of temari-zushi, like have an egg temari-zushi in the middle, and surround it with salmon or tuna so the whole thing will look like a flower. I’d still dip it into soy sauce when I eat it, but if the rice is well seasoned (with vinegar), you won’t even need soy sauce.
If you have any questions about any of my how-to’s, please feel free to leave a comment or email me!