Making Sushi

April 15th, 2009    •  by Bethia    •   5 Comments »

I love sushi, but eating good sushi out can be expensive and supermarket sushi is usually disappointing. My friends Margaux and Tim got me started on making sushi at home and I was surprised by how good it was. While I am certainly no expert, it isn’t as daunting as I thought and we have had fun experimenting.


Luckily there is a great Japanese supermarket in Columbus Tensuke Market, so procuring the necessary ingredients can be done in one stop. Tensuke Market is an inexhaustible source of wacky and wonderful Japanese ingredients. I find it impossible to spend less than half an hour reading the english translations and wondering what on earth things are and how to use them. Our current addiction is furikake, a mix of seaweed, sesame seeds and bonito flakes, that you can eat on fish, eggs, rice or just off the palm of your hand. 

Start with some sushi grade fish (unless you just want to make vegetarian sushi). Pictured above are tuna, salmon and tilapia. Make your sushi rice, making sure that you have time to cool it before you need it. Alton Brown’s method has proved to be a winner. 


Assemble your ingredients (nori sheets, vegetables, wasabi) and equipment (sushi rolling mat, very sharp knife, cutting board, water). Start rolling. We pretty much improvised, but there are plenty of resources online if you want more advice on how to make sushi rolls. Admittedly there is quite an investment in ingredients the first time but the nori, rice, soy sauce etc will last you for several sushi making attempts.


Add accompaniments such as soy sauce, wasabi, seaweed salad, miso soup and pickled ginger. The hardcore can even experiment with homemade pickled ginger.

5 Comments to “Making Sushi”

  1. Nice. I’ve been wanting to do this for awhile, but thought it always looked pretty difficult.

    Where did you get your fish? Do they sell sushi-grade fresh fish at Tensuke? Or did you go to The Fish Guys at the North Market?

    • hungrywoolf
      April 15, 2009

      The rolling takes a bit of practice, but even if they don’t look perfect- they still taste good!

      The fish was from Tensuke. they do have sushi grade fish. Not a huge selection but I would guess maybe 6 different types and the tamago, squid, shrimp etc.

  2. I have never been brave enough to try making Sushi at home – it has always seemed fairly daunting. My hubby read your post and said “See! She made sushi at home! Why can’t we?” So now I have to work up the nerve – thanks a lot!

    Tensuke will have various types of sushi grade fish. I’ve seen octopus a few times – it just depends.

    I’ve heard that “experts” recommend freezing fish for sushi to avoid any unpleasant problems with parasites – do you really think its that big an issue?

  3. michael
    April 17, 2009

    Love this post..

    Sushi rolls are simple and fun to do.. I’ve had parties before where some friends and I get together and “roll our own” and eat the results..

    One of my favourite types of rolls is cucumber and pickled plum (Umeboshi). You can also get both items at Tensuke..

    I do believe that most of the fish you can buy in the US has been flash frozen already. IIRC it’s a USDA requirement. The fish you *really* need to watch out for is freshwater fish.. Just don’t eat it raw.. the parasites you can get are bad news.

  4. Tensuke has lots more sushi/sashimi grade fish in the frozen cases. I got Ben about 70 bucks worth of sashimi for his bday last year, and some of the stuff I got only came into Tensuke frozen. I talked a lot with the chef there, and he led me through all the frozen stuff, helped me choose, and pulled it the day before so he could thaw it and slice it the day of for me. I couldn’t tell the difference between the frozen stuff and the stuff I chose from the front case. They only get mackerel in frozen, and it was delish!

Leave a Comment

Book Now