Sushi For Beginners

Your guide to a perfectly delicious “cheat’s” sushi without the need of a sushi mat

Salmon “sushi” squares

Picture by: John Paul Urizar/

Picture by: John Paul Urizar/

PREP AND COOK TIME 40 Mins (+1 Hour Standing Time) MAKES 36

2 cups (400g) Japanese sushi rice
3 cups (750ml) water
1/3 cup (80ml) rice vinegar
2 tbsps sugar
½ tsp sea salt flakes
1/3 cup (50g) sesame seeds, toasted
2 tbsps black sesame seeds, toasted
1 tbsp wasabi paste
150g sliced smoked salmon
¼ cup (50g) salmon roe (pearls)
Finely shredded nori, for garnish, optional

  1. Rinse rice under cold water; drain. Bring measured water and rice to the boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low; cover tightly with lid lined with a clean tea towel (Step 1, above). Cook for 12 mins or until water is absorbed. Remove from the heat; stand, covered, for 10 mins.
  2. Mix the vinegar, sugar and salt in a small jug; stir until sugar is dissolved (Step 2).
  3. Spread the rice into a large, non-metallic bowl. Using a large spoon, repeatedly slice through the rice at a sharp angle to break up lumps and separate the grains, gradually adding vinegar mixture at the same time (Step 3).
  4. Line a 22cm dquare cake pan with freezer or plastic wrap. Press rice firmly into the prepared pan (Step 4). Refrigerate for at least 30 mins or until firm.
  5. Turn rice out onto bench and cut into 36 squares (Step 5A). Coat sides of squares in combined sesame seeds (Step 5B). Top each rice square with wasabi, salmon, salmon roe and nori, if desired.
    Not suitable to freeze. Not suitable to microwave.

Test Kitchen Tips

  • Other delicious toppings are hot smoked trout and pickled ginger, prawn with wasabi mayonnaise, or avocado with Japanese pickles and cucumber. Rice can be prepared a day ahead, assemble close to serving.