When we go out to eat sushi we always sit at the sushi bar. Mainly because S likes being perched on high bar stools. Sitting at the sushi bar gives me an advantage too. I can watch the sushi chef to make sure he washes his fishy hands before making my veggie sushi (usually oshinko). Making sushi at home however is problem free. For one, its cheaper, and I dont have to police fishy hands. No worrying about a lone fish roe clinging to my sushi roll! The best part is, I can play around and experiment with sushi ideas. Like sweet sticky rice sushi. I like rice paper wraps, I like sticky rice and I like adzuki beans. So I put them all together to make a dessert sushi. The rice paper does the job of the seaweed in a traditional sushi roll. The rice is cooked in coconut milk and rolled with a sweet adzuki bean filling. Its fun to experiment with the food coloring in this recipe. I love sakura mochi, so I tried to recreate the cherry blossom color by adding two drops of red coloring to the rice. The rice paper is colored to look like seaweed, exact food coloring proportions are below. I feel a little like Sandra Lee with all the food coloring!
Adzuki beans – 1/2 cup
Sugar – 7 tbsp (3+4). This will yield a mildly sweet sushi. Add more sugar if you like.
Sushi Rice – 1 1/4 cup
Coconut milk – 1 1/4 cup
Sesame seeds – 1/2 tbsp, toasted
Rice paper wraps – 6
Food coloring – red, blue, green
Salt – 1/4 tsp
To make the Adzuki beans: place the beans in a large pot with a lid. Add plenty of water and 1/4 tsp salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, put the lid on and let it cook. The beans should be done in about 1 1/2 hours. If you have excess water, drain it. Return the beans to the stove and let the moisture evaporate. Then add 3 tbsp sugar. Mix well and keep aside.
To make rice: While the beans are cooking, place the sushi rice, 1 cup water and 1 1/4 cup coconut milk in a pan. Bring to a boil. Then reduce heat, put a lid on and let the rice cook, about 25 minutes. The rice should have absorbed all the liquid. Turn off heat, add 4 tbsp sugar, the toasted sesame seeds, and 2-4 drops red food coloring and mix well. This will give you pink colored rice. Change up the colors as you like.
To make sushi rolls: Place a rice paper wrap on your work surface. In a small bowl, mix 2 tbsp water and 1 tsp sugar. To make a seaweed color, add food coloring to the sugar water in the following proportions: 10 drops green+4 drops blue+3 drops red. Using a basting brush, brush this colored water all over the rice paper wrap. Turn it over and brush the other side as well. In about 30 seconds the rice paper wrap will be soft and pliable. If your rice paper is still stiff, use warmer water or just use more water to brush on and let it soak another 30 seconds.
Now spread the rice evenly all over the rice paper; using your fingers is the easiest way to do it. Arrange the beans on top of the rice, but only on the end closest to you. Now, roll the rice paper away from you forming a sushi roll. Cut into pieces with a sharp knife.
Some Tasty Variations
Instead of adzuki beans, use fruits in the center of the roll. Mangoes or pineapple will work well.
To recreate fish roe, color some sesame seeds with orange food coloring and sprinkle on top of the cut sushi.