Vinegared Rice
Vinegared Rice (Sushi meshi)

【Ingredients】(4 Servings)

Rice (米 / Kome)……360cc
Konbu (昆布 / Konbu)(5㎝ square)……1
Sushi vinegar (すし酢 / Sushisu)
Vinegar (酢 / Su)……3tbsp
Sugar (砂糖 / Satō)……4tsp
Salt (塩/ Shio)……1tsp

1. Combine all of the sushi vinegar ingredients and mix well to dissolve all of the salt and sugar. If you have a hard time dissolving the salt and sugar, transfer the mixture to a pot and stir over low heat.
2. Wash the rice and put into a rice cooker. Add water up to the “2合” (pronounced “ni gō”) level marked on the inside of the pot. Place the konbu on top and let the pot sit, as is, for at least 30 minutes. After at least 30 minutes has passed, turn the rice cooker on by pressing the “炊飯” (pronounced “suihan”) switch.
3. When the rice is done cooking, remove the konbu and transfer the rice to a sushi oke or a bowl.
4. Add the sushi vinegar by pouring it onto a shamoji (“しゃもじ” in Japanese characters – a paddle like utensil used for handling rice) while moving the shamoji over the rice for even coverage. Mix the rice with a few (no more than around 10) big strokes to ensure even exposure of the rice to the vinegar.
5. Now, while using a paper fan, or something similar, to cool the rice, mix by holding the shamoji at a diagonal to the surface of the rice and using a cutting motion. Continue to mix in this way until the rice takes on a shiny appearance and becomes more sticky than when you started.
6. When you are done mixing, cover the sushi oke with a damp cloth to prevent the rice from drying out.

IMG_5353Sushi oke (寿司桶) or Handai (飯台)
This is a round, wooden tub used for preparing vinegared rice. These are made of wood to take advantage of that material’s ability to absorb and give off water, and thus control the moisture content of the vinegared rice. Before using a sushi oke, always wet it and remove the excess water with a towel.

Tip for Mixing Vinegared Rice
Cooked rice absorbs sushi vinegar best when it is hot, so mixing is best done before the rice cools.

Recipe Developed by: Machiko Tateno