Sushi rice is the creme de la creme of Asian cuisine. It’s one of the most popular meals consumed by residents and tourists in Japan. It’s one of those dishes that leaves a memory with you. So, we can tell that you’re excited because you finally get a chance to make this meal in your kitchen. The good news is that you won’t just learn one way to cook sushi rice (without over or under cooking it) but three cooking methods. Isn’t that amazing?
Before we dive right into the cooking process for sushi rice, we’d like to formally introduce you to this dish, the best types of rice for it, and the recommended rice-to-water ratio you’ll need to cook the rice. You’ll also get to learn about some tips that will come in handy when you want to make magic with sushi recipes.
Types Of Rice To Use
Sushi rice is a one-of-a-kind dish cuisine. So it’s natural to expect that there are certain kinds of rice that you’ll use to prepare this delicacy. Before we tell you the types of rice to use for sushi rice, we’ll start by telling you what you can’t use. To cook delicious sushi rice, you can’t use the rice (medium-grain rice) you’d normally use to make burritos or curry.
- Short grain rice: To make the perfect sushi rice, this is the best type of rice to use. It’s also called Shari or Japonica (Japanese short-grain rice).
- Long grain rice: Ideally, we won’t recommend this to anyone making sushi rice, but it will make an ‘okay’ alternative to the short grain rice.
What Is Sushi Rice?
Sushi rice is rounder and shorter than jasmine rice and basmati rice. It’s the prime meal in Japan. The country is regarded as the sushi capital of the world. Ironically, sushi rice originates from China. It tastes different from conventional rice because it’s cooked with sushi vinegar, sugar, and salt. Sushi rice has a sticky texture, and this is why you can easily form those small pieces with it.
Rice To Water Ratio For Sushi Rice In A Rice Cooker
This is one of the most important things to consider when cooking sushi rice. You don’t want to use too much water and end up with overcooked rice. That will be a meal miles away from the perfect sushi rice. If you use too little water, the rice will be crunchy, dry, and most likely undercooked.
This begs the question – what’s the ideal rice-to-water ratio? This depends on the cooking method.
If you’re using a stove top to cook sushi rice, the rice-water ratio should be 1:1.25. In layman’s terms, this means for each cup of rice, add 1 and a quarter cup.
On the flip side, if you’re using a rice cooker bowl, the ratio should be 1:1. We’re sure you’ve figured out what that means already. For the sake of those who haven’t, that means a cup of water for each cup of uncooked rice.
What People Love About Sushi Rice?
What’s there not to love? Japanese sushi rice is wholesome, tasty, and has low fat and calories. This sticky rice is also a versatile dish, and this is a big deal if you love being creative in the kitchen. You can use a wide variety of toppings or fillings for this dish. Your sushi rice can also be elaborate or simple, depending on your preference.
Sushi Rice Recipe
For the perfect sushi rice, you need the best sushi rice recipe. We’ll be giving you three different recipes. One for each cooking method. What they have in common are the ingredients – uncooked rice, sushi vinegar, and water.
Below is the list of things you need to cook this dish with a rice cooker:
- 2 cups of sushi rice (we recommend using the rice measuring cup that came with the cooker)
- 2 cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of sushi vinegar. You can either buy it from a store or make it at home. If you decide on doing the latter, you’ll need rice wine vinegar or seasoned rice vinegar, sugar, and salt for the vinegar mixture.
Here’s the recipe for cooking this dish with a pressure pot:
- 2 cups of sushi rice
- 2 cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of homemade or store-bought sushi vinegar
Below is the recipe for cooking rice with a saucepan:
- 2 cups of sushi rice
- 2 and a half cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of homemade or store-bought sushi vinegar
How Do You Make Sushi Rice Using The Rice Cooker Method?
Let’s show you how to make the best sushi rice using our preferred method. Follow the steps below:
- Put the sushi rice grains in the rice cooker bowl
- Add enough water and rinse the rice grains with your hands
- Repeat the above step 2 or 3 times depending on how much starch the rice has
- Now, it’s time to cook. Add the recommended quantity of rice to the rice cooker bowl and let it soak for 30 minutes
- Select “rice” on your rice cooker and start the equipment
- Your cooked rice will be ready once the rice cooker as soon as the cook time is over
How Do You Make Sushi Rice Using A Pressure Pot?
- Just like with the rice cooker, put your cups of rice into the pressure pot bowl and add enough water. Rinse the rice 2-3 times
- Now, add the recommended amount of water in the bowl to cook sushi rice. Let the rice soak for 30 minutes
- Cover the pressure pot with its lid and seal it properly. Also, make sure the valve is sealed as well
- Set the pot to ‘high pressure’ and cook sushi rice for 3 minutes
- Then set it to ‘natural release steam’ for 10 minutes
- Slowly release any remaining pressure
How Do You Make Sushi Using A Stovetop Saucepan?
- Get a medium saucepan and add all the rice inside
- Pour enough water into the pan and wash it 2-3 times
- Add your 2 and a half cups of water to the rinsed rice
- Place the saucepan on the stovetop, switch on the cooker, and set the flames to high heat. Don’t cover the saucepan.
- Once the rice starts boiling, cover the saucepan and reduce the flames to the lowest setting. Leave the rice to cook for 15 minutes
- Remove the saucepan from the stovetop with the lid still on and allow the rice to steam inside for about 10 minutes. During this period, don’t take off the lid to peek at the rice so you don’t let some steam escape
- Remove the lid after it steams
Seasoning Sushi Rice With Vinegar
When you’re done cooking the rice, transfer it into a wooden bowl. You can also use a chopping board or a non-stick wide pot. Add your sushi vinegar mixture to the cooked rice evenly and use a wooden spoon or a rice paddle to gently stir it. Move the spoon like you’re slicing or lifting something. It’s best to do this immediately after cooking so that the steam will help the vinegar with the sushi rice seasoning.
Helpful Tips For Cooking Sushi Rice
In our enthusiasm to cook authentic sushi rice, we’re prone to making several mistakes. This is why you need to know the tips that will help you cook the rice with perfection.
Avoid Stirring The Rice Too Much
When you want to season sushi rice, take care to stir the rice gently and moderately with a rice paddle. The reason is that sushi rice is delicate, and if you stir it too much, you’ll end up with broken rice grains or mushy cooked rice.
The Right Amount Of Sushi Vinegar
When making sushi rice, you can’t skip the part where you’ll season the cooked rice with the vinegar mixture. For a start, use a tablespoon of seasoned sushi vinegar per cup of uncooked rice. After some time, you can increase it to 2 tablespoons. After adding the vinegar to the rice, allow the rice to absorb it.
Don’t Take Off The Lid When Steaming
This is very important. If you want to make good sushi rice, ensure that you leave the lid on during the steaming process. Taking it off will disrupt the process, and your steamed rice may not have the texture that it should have.
Soak The Rice Before Cooking
We recommend soaking the rinsed sushi rice for about 30 minutes before cooking it. Failure to do this will leave you with some raw or overcooked grains.
Don’t Rinse The Rice With A Sieve
When rinsing the rice in the rice bowl, avoid straining it with a sieve or colander because they will break the grains of the rinsed sushi rice.
What To Serve It With
When your vinegar-flavored rice is ready, you can serve it with miso soup, nikujaga, and okonomiyaki. You can also serve sushi rolls with chunks of beef, pieces of chicken, or turkey tenderloin.
Frequently Asked Questions – Faqs
Can I Store Sushi Rice In The Freezer?
Sure, you can. As long as you have vacuum-sealed bags, airtight containers, or freezer bags with the air removed, you can store your uncooked sushi rice in the freezer without issues. For leftover sushi rice, stick to using airtight containers to prevent contamination and possible food poisoning.
What’s The Difference Between A Regular Cup And A Rice Cooker Cup Measure?
The rice cooker cup is a bit smaller than the regular cup. The former measures 180ml, while the latter is 237ml. If you’re using the rice cooker bowl to prepare your Japanese rice, use the rice cooker cup. For the other methods, you can use the regular cup to measure the rice grains.
What Made My Sushi Rice Mushy?
There are multiple reasons why your hot rice will have a mushy texture. The first one is not getting rid of all the water you used to cook your sushi rice. This will cause the rice to absorb too much moisture. Secondly, if you add more than the recommended amount of water, the rice will overcook and become mushy. Lastly, you over-stir the rice after cooking.
How Long Can Sushi Rice Sit In Water?
The duration varies based on the season. The goal of soaking the rice is to allow the moisture to get to the innermost part of the grains. If it’s winter season, soak the rice for 2 hours. If it’s summer, an hour is enough.
What Will Happen If I Don’t Soak Sushi Rice?
As we mentioned earlier, some grains in your rice will be overcooked or raw if you skip the soaking process. Unless you choose to cook it slowly over medium heat.
Preparing sushi rice can be tricky because it’s a thin line between sticky rice and a mushy porridge. This shouldn’t discourage you from making your favorite sushi roll from the comfort of your home. The hack to a homemade sushi night is making sure you soak your rice before cooking, using the right amount of water, and not stirring the rice too much while adding the vinegar. As long as you avoid these, you’re good to go. Oh, one more thing before you go. Bon appetit!