California Roll Sushi

Bamboo Sushi Rolling Mat (Available at Asian stores or use a bamboo placemat)
3 cups short grain white rice (no substitute)
3/4 cup crab meat (fresh or the fake kind)
4 small pickling cucumbers peeled and cut into thin matchstick slices
1 avacado, mashed
4 sheets of nori (seaweed) to wrap
toasted sesame seeds
mayonnaise (Asian or American)
Japanese hot sauce
wasabi to taste (available by the tube in Asian grocery stores)
pickled ginger, chilled
soy sauce to taste
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
2 TBS sugar
1 tsp salt

Prepare the Rice:
1. Put the rice in a bowl and wash it with cold water. Repeat washing until the water becomes clear.
2. Drain the rice in a colander and place it in a pan or rice cooker and add 3 1/2 cups water.
3. Let the rice soak in the water at least 30 min. One hour is ideal.
4. If you are cooking the rice in a pan, cover the pan with a lid and bring to a boil with hight heat. Turn the heat down very low and cook about 15-20 min. until the water is almost gone. Remove the pan from the heat and let it steam for 10-15 min before serving. *If you are using an electric rice cooker, you don't have to worry about adjusting the heat. You still need to let the cooked rice steam before you open the lid.
5. Place rice in a large wooden bowl or on a platter, allowing it to cool to room temperature, then stir it with a wooden spoon or paddle. This makes 6 cups you will only need 4. Save the rest to eat.
6. Prepare sushi vinegar (sushi-zu) by mixing rice vinegar, sugar and salt in a small pan. Put the pan on low heat and cook until the sugar dissolves. Cool the vinegar mixture.
7. Spread the cooked hot rice into a large plate (if you have it, use a wooden bowl called sushi-oke) by spatula (called shamoji).
8. Sprinkle the vinegar mixture over four cups of the rice and fold the rice by shamoji very quickly. Be careful not to smash the rice. You want the vinegar to be absorbed by the wooden bowl don't add too much.

Prepare the Filling:
1. Wash, peel and slice the cucumber in half lengthwise into thin matchsticks. Scoop out seeds with a spoon if there are any.
2. Place the slices of cucumber in a bowl of salted cold water while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
3. Place the crab meat in a bowl, making sure it is divided into smaller pieces and mix it with 1 TBS mayo and a bit of salt.
4. Peel avacodo, remove seed and mash it, add a bit of salt.

Roll em Roll em Roll em:
1. Spread the rice in a flat layer; aim for a rectangle about 4 inches wide by the width of your bamboo mat sushi roller.
2. Place a layer of seaweed just above the rice (reverse positions if you want the rice on the inside of the roll).
3. Spread a narrow, thin line of mayonnaise across the seaweed.
4. Place cucumber slices on the mayonnaise.
5. Place a line of avacado above the cucmber.
6. Place the crab in a line above the avacado.
7. Wrap the bamboo rolling mat with plastic wrap such as Saran Wrap, then, using the bamboo mat, begin rolling the rice seaweed, cucumber and avacado cinnamonroll meets havana cigar style.
8. Sprinkle the sushi roll with toasted sesame seeds on all sides.
9. Cut the sushi roll into rounds, arrange on a plate. Serve with ginger, smaller bowl of soy sauce and let each person add the wasabi to the soy sauce to taste. Mix mayonnaise and Japanese Hot sauce to taste in another small dish and serve.
10. Optional: Serve with saki, miso soup, edame (soy beans parboiled in salted water)

~*~ From Suzy (Tweaked by me from an article in Thrive and a web recipe) ~*~