I love sushi. There’s something so fresh and delicious and healthy about it – it’s the very definition of good and good for you. And while I am usually up for trying to recreate my restaurant favorites in my own kitchen, there’s something about making sushi rolls that I just can’t wrap my mind around. So I decided to tackle that favorite of all favorites, the California roll…but in salad form. Thereby saving myself and the Southern husband from a meltdown in the kitchen from me trying to roll up all the delicious ingredients in seaweed paper. That sound you just heard was the Southern husband heaving a giant sigh of relief. So if you think you might like some California roll salad in your life too, read on!
Nope, this is a freeform version of the California roll, with all the ingredients…minus the seaweed paper…gathered together on a plate and drizzled with a little soy sauce dressing. Because California rolls are always so neat and pretty, I did try and arrange things in a nice-looking way on the plate. But once you have it in front of you for the eating, I highly recommend swishing things around a little so you get a little bit of everything in each bite. Just like you do in a California roll!
So what are those things? A generous amount of rice tossed with a little rice vinegar. Sliced up cucumber and avocado. Torn up pieces of crab sticks. Lightly toasted sesame seeds. And in nod to the wasabi paste that is usually served with California rolls, some chopped scallions to give it a little bite. I drizzled a little watered down soy sauce over the top of this after I took its picture (only because I forgot to do it BEFORE I took the picture, and by then my camera card was out and my lights were off and blah blah blah you don’t want to know). But the soy sauce gave it a nice amount of seasoning.
So if you (like me!) want to try California rolls at home, here’s an Irish girl’s version of it, with deep apologies to any sushi roll purists out there, as I’m sure I have broken any number of rules. But it tasted good!
- 2 cups cooked white or brown rice, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar (or more to taste)
- 1 cup crab sticks torn into bite sized pieces or lump crabmeat
- 1 cup cucumber, cut into matchstick slices
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, lightly toasted
- 1 scallion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce thinned with 1 tablespoon water
- Mix the rice with the vinegar and taste. Add more vinegar by the teaspoonful if you like it with a little more kick.
- Arrange the rice, crabstacks, cucumber and avocado on two plates.
- Scatter the sesame seeds and scallion on top.
- Drizzle with soy sauce mixture and serve!