Sushi 101 with Japanese Chef Seiji Kamura

A plate of assorted sushi

A plate of assorted sushi

Japanese chef Seiji Kamura has lived in the Philippines for over two decades and during this time, has been very generous in sharing his country’s authentic cuisine with Filipinos, not just by cooking for them through the restaurants he owns, but also by publishing cookbooks under the Maya Kitchen.

This month, chef Kamura found another way to teach Filipinos how to recreate his native
dishes by joining Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria’s Japanese food promotion. At the hotel’s Seven Corners restaurant, he will whip up his finest creations like Rainbow Maki, Crispy Kani Pomelo Salad, and Green Tea with Red Mongo Jelly, as well as conduct a sushi cooking class.

On April 3, chef Kamura demonstrated one of the classes he is set to offer with members of the press who attended the launch of the hotel’s month-long Japanese food festival.
Here are chef Kamura six easy steps to prepare salmon sushi:

1. Make sure the salmon has been frozen properly and recently. Tell the person from whom you are buying the fish that you intend to eat it raw. If there is a Japanese market in your area, try going there. Buy the fish on the same day you are preparing the sushi.

Japanese chef Seiji Kamura

Japanese chef Seiji Kamura

2. Make sushi rice. You cannot just use any rice; the rice needs to stick together for easy pick-up with chopsticks. Sushi rice is seasoned with vinegar (the “su” in sushi actually means vinegar), sugar and salt.

3. Slice the salmon into pieces. The pieces should be approximately 5-cm long, 3-cm wide, and 1-cm thick. If the fillet is not thick enough to get the needed width, slice diagonally. A very sharp knife is recommended.

4. Dip your fingers into water and scoop up a little amount of rice. Take a small amount of rice, about 3/4 the size of your palm. Roll and squeeze it together until it forms a firm log-shaped rectangle.

5. Smear a pea-sized dab of wasabi on one side of the fish slice. The wasabi is optional but it helps the salmon stick to the rice, and adds a touch of extra flavor. Place the fish on the rice log.

6. Gently shape the rice and salmon together. Serve.


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