Sushi Rice

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by ringtonebeat, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. ringtonebeat

    ringtonebeat

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    Any one have any tips for making Sushi Rice. I have a party for about 180 that we have to do, ive never made it and neither has anyone I work with. We have some time before the party to make it a few times. Any tip would be apprciated. Thanks love this forum.
     
  2. hophound

    hophound

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    i worked at a sushi restaurant for a few months as a line cook but occasionally helped with the sushi rice.  the one thing i remember the chef stressed the most was the washing of the rice! wash the rice in a large bowl with cold water and run your hands through it in slow circular motions. after the water turns dirty rinse the rice in a colander. repeat this until the water that you wash the rice in becomes clear. cooking the rice is basically like long grain rice but the ratio of water to rice is increased slightly.  cant quite remember the right ratio however...
     
  3. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    The right "ratio," such as it is depends on what kind of rice you're using and how much rice you're cooking.  For most rice, you may use the "1 knuckle trick," which is basically 1:1 + some extra water.  

    The way I learned was to cook, dump the rice when it was done onto a sheet pan, and fan, fan, fan, the steam off so it couldn't re-condense on the rice.  That was before electric rice cookers were common though. Doesn't exactly  seem practical for a group in excess of 150 either, does it?

    You MUST use an appropriate type of rice,  You CANNOT use a basmati or ordinary long grain type.  You SHOULD NOT use aged or old rice.  Regardless of grain shape, you need to use something more glutinous.  Other than saying I like to use CalRose which is an American grown japonica, I don't know what's available to you.   

    You should season the rice with vinegar, sugar and salt while it's still warm.

    Under the most ideal circumstances, holding the types of rice used for "sushi" is an issue.  But holding seasoned rice in quantity, for more than a couple of hours without seriously compromising quality... no flipping idea.  You've got to keep it moist, reheating will turn it into sticky mush.  There must be tricks, but I don't know them.

    Your best bet might be to rent a bunch of rice cookers, schlepp them along, cook and season onsite, and hold in the cookers with a damp towel under the lid.

    Good luck,

    BDL 
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2010
  4. chefross

    chefross

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    I've made Sushi rice in quantity before and it is not easy. The window for holding the rice is very very, did I say very? SHORT!!!

    I do not wash my rice however. An Asian associate explained that soaking the rice for 30 minutes before cooking does a better job of leeching out some of the starch before cooking. After the time limit the rice is strained and rinsed before going in to cook. My ratio was 1:1 1/2.

    After cooking the rice is spread out unto a non metallic pan and drizzled with the rice wine/vinegar/sugar mixture.
     
  5. hophound

    hophound

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    yeah the place i worked had the advantage of large electric cookers that could hold the rice for a  couple of hours without ruining it.  After cooking the rice the first time they would dump it into a large wooden bowl (hangiri) and then "cut" it with a wooden paddle using some of their house made rice vinegar. Then they would transfer it back into the cooker and keep it there for service. not sure how to do this without the electric cookers though...
     
  6. ringtonebeat

    ringtonebeat

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    Thanks everyone for the tips, gonna start messin around with the rice this week sometime. Thanks again this should all be helpful.
     
  7. gunnar

    gunnar

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    briefly worked in a place that the chefs would store the rice under a wet towel in an ice chest. would be pretty good for a few hours..but they would make at least two batches a day.
     
  8. lentil

    lentil

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    I use seasoned rice vinegar.  Are you making nori rolls?  If so, you can make them up a day in advance, assemble the rolls but do not cut, and cover them with paper toweling that has been wet and rung very dry. I line a half hotel pan with damp paper toweling then weave damp p towels over and under each consecutive roll. Wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate.  The key is not to let the rolls touch eachother while resting or they'll be welded together and separating them will tear the seaweed sheet.  Use a very sharp knife to slice the rolls. Wiping it clean often and keeping it wet will help keep the slices neat.
     
  9. titomike

    titomike

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    One of my step-sons makes the sushi for his seafood restaurant and I have made it there also. Cooked and seasoned as above it gets trayed up thinly and chilled before the rolls are made up...no problem & more practical under the circumstances. The rice is good to use the next day as its the filling that deteriorates appreciably rather than the rice. I use a stepped palate knife as you're aiming for one grain thick.

    I am aware of the shelf-life as the sushi rolls past their preferred window come home to us...good but not perfect.
     
  10. chefedb

    chefedb

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    The cooks I worked with used to make it 2 or 3 times a day.( They had a 5 hour rule) They stressed quality, even though it was quantity. We never had  a complaint and never had bad rice. Like BDL, they cooled it on sheet pans and ran an electric fan on it to cool it quick.
     
  11. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Lentil and Tito,

    What kind(s) of rice are you using? 

    My experience, which is admittedly limited, is that anything dry enough not to be soggy gets too dry after a few hours (especially in the fridge), and anything damp enough not to get dry becomes soggy as soon as it's out of the refrigerator.  If you were very good and very lucky and managed to split the difference right down the middle, you'd just end up with gummy.  Somehow that doesn't seem like a big victory.

    And geeze, doesn't the rice loses all its polish after two or three hours?  I didn't talk about seasoning and polishing, but after all that time and effort spent putting a shine on it, it seems such a shame to lose its visual appeal. 

    Maybe it's different on the left coast, or maybe you have some kind of rice that holds better, but you don't see people here lined up for day old sushi.  Not for rice balls either.

    Ed,

    Yes, exactly.  I know when you're talking about "quantity" you mean things like the entire Italian population of Queens or half an Army base, and the logistics are sufficiently crushing that five hours -- the time between lunch and dinner -- is a reasonable outside limit so as not to break up the kitchen to prepare a snack for a few wiseg... whoops... I mean offic... whoops again... relatives coming in at odd-times.  But what I'm really getting from five hours is that lunch rice was tossed before dinner.

    Anyway, my advice -- for whatever it's worth -- is be like Ed and definitely do not hold overnight.

    Never settle,

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010
  12. mauu5head

    mauu5head

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    As for Calrose Rice to Water ratio:  1:1.75

    As for quantities / yields:  2qt Calrose rice (before wash) will yield 1 flush sheet tray.  We could get about 20 rolls of sushi with each tray.  

    Make sure you wash for at least 5-10 minutes, or until water is very close to clear

    Without rice cooker:  (Without a lid, otherwise use a tight fitting lid)
    • Premake a tight fitting aluminum foil lid fitted to the pan you will be using.  
    • Bring rice and water to a  boil
    • Swiftly stir once or twice to remove rice from bottom
    • Cover with premade lid, and turn heat to lowest setting, or if a strong pilot light is available, use this.
    • Cook for 12 minutes
    • Remove from heat, do not touch the lid
    • Leave for 35 minutes untouched
    • Remove lid, fluff with fork or wood spoon, season on sheet tray and fan the steam.  Allow to cool slightly before rolling sushi
     
  13. pollopicu

    pollopicu

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    Yes, everything he/she said. I make sushi on a semi-regular basis and this is exactly my technique.