Sushi Nights & Wasabi Fights

Back when I was younger and maybe a little more daring, dinners at home were sure tear jerkers.

My room mate and I at the time would frequently bring home or make our own sushi. In fact, it was our equivalent to most other twenty something’s macaroni and cheese.

About a bottle of sake later, the games would begin….
Starting with a fleck, then working up to a gob, we would up each other’s wasabi intake. For those unfamiliar with the powers of the great green Japanese horseradish, wasabi most closely resembles a spicy hot mustard sensation.

Serving our sushi with it’s typical Wasabi-joyu, soy sauce combination for dipping, we embraced the festivities, upping the ante with the additional blob atop the sushi itself. You see, when wasabi is a even a little over loaded, the sensation is nothing like the burning tongue of a pepper. Starting with a tingle, it continues, flurrying up your nasal passage, stopping only at the bottom of your eye, usually finishing with a tear and a jolt of adrenaline.

Watching someone suffer is not only entertaining, but addictive, which, I suppose is why we did it. As juvenile foodies, I’m sure there is much more mischief we could have been getting ourselves into. But oh, it hurt so good.


1 Cup Glutenous Rice
1 2/3 Cups Water
2 Tablespoons Rice Wine Vinegar
4 – 6 Asparagus Spears
1/2 English Cucumber
1 Avocado
1 Asian Purple Yam, optional
1 Carrot, optional
3-6 Sugar Snap Peas, optional
2 Tablespoons Black Sesame Seeds
4 Sheets Nori

Low Sodium Soy Sauce

Be sure to seek out glutenous rice. It may be white, but it’s sticky and it’s what works.
Prepare the rice as to the package directions.
The same as the rice, be sure to use nothing other than rice wine vinegar. Most grocers carry it, but if you can’t find it, I wouldn’t suggest substituting anything else for it.
Sprinkle the rice vinegar over the rice and stir well to coat grains.
Allow the rice to cool enough to handle.
Cut the cucumber into 1/2″ strips.
Peel and cut the carrot into matchsticks.
Trim and steam the asparagus.
Peel and pit the avocado. Slice into 1/4″ lengths.
Peel and steam the yam. Slice into 1/2″ strips.
Wash and string the sugar snap peas.

If you have a bamboo sushi mat, use it. Otherwise, you should get by on a cutting board, it just might be a bit stickier.
With wet hands, spread a thing layer of rice over a nori sheet.
Sprinkle over 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of the sesame seeds.
If you’d like the roll “inside out”, flip it over before filling.
Fill the roll placing thin rows of 2 asparagus spears, avocado, yam and carrot about an inch from the edge of the nori sheet.*
Roll the sushi away from you, tucking tightly until you reach the end.
Lightly dampen the end of the nori with water and allow the sushi roll to rest on the seam as you continue to roll the remaining ingredients.

*Other tasty combinations are:
Sugar Snap Peas, Carrot & Avocado
Just cucumber. Just avocado. Just asparagus.
Yam and Carrot.
If your feeling playful with any of these combinations, dot a smear of wasabi beside the veg for an extra fun kick.

Serve with soy sauce and additional wasabi.

Makes 4 Rolls.


~ by Dayna on October 11, 2007.

5 Responses to “Sushi Nights & Wasabi Fights”

  1. I loe wasabi!! That first hit – there’s nothing like it. Like you said, it hurts so good :)

  2. Those look so good, my sushi rolls always end up mashed together because I start losing patience.

    You asked about the tea flower, surprisingly enough, I do remember where I got it: Ten Ren’s Tea & Ginseng at 454 Dundas St. W, right in Chinatown, they sell them individually.

  3. your dishes always have such breathtaking presentations; and these sushi rolls (and ESPECIALLY the wasabi – wow!) are no exception :0)

  4. Dayna,
    You post photographs of the most tantalizing dishes. I must say, your photographs and culinary expertise is inspiring!!!

  5. Very, very nice.

    Rolls look good, photographs are great and your description of the wasabi rush, dead on.

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