Recipe: California Rolls (courtesy of Paradise Grove Avocados)

This has been an avocado month at the Frugal Upstate Village Homestead!  It’s crazy!  I had already planned to share my Cobb Salad recipe with you, and another client (for cooking oil actually) created a recipe for me that includes avocad0 that you’ll be seeing later this week. . . so when the kind folks at Paradise Grove Avocados asked me if I would like to try some of theirs, create a recipe around them (you’ll see it farther down this post) and share information on their upcoming twitter party I figured “What the heck!”

You see Paradise Grove is hosting a special twitter party (with yours truly and several other fabulous bloggers as hosts) to share fun ways to use avocados in your Super Bowl Snacking!  There will be fun tips and great prizes!

DETAILS:

SUPER PRIZES:

  • RUNNERS-UP
    3 winners will receive:
    6 lbs of avocados (approx. 12 pieces),
    – AND –
    1 PopChips NEW tortilla chips variety pack (1 case/9 – 1oz bags) in 4 great flavors!
  • TWITTER GRAND PRIZE
    1 winner will receive:
    A Super Molcajete Bowl with 6 lbs of avocados (approx. 12 pieces), football-themed napkins, guacamole seasoning mix,
    – AND –
    A 1-month supply of PopChips NEW tortilla chips (1 case/24 – 1oz bags) in 4 great flavors!
Paradise Grove Avocados Super Molcajete Bowl and Pop Chips
  • PINTEREST GRAND PRIZE (Participate in Twitter Party & enter via Rafflecopter below to increase your chances of winning.)
    1 winner will receive:
    A Super Molcajete Bowl with 6 lbs of avocados (approx. 12 pieces), football-themed napkins, guacamole seasoning mix,
    – AND –
    A 1-month supply of PopChips NEW tortilla chips (1 case/24 – 1oz bags) in 4 great flavors!

I hope to see you there!

Now, on to the recipe.  I love avocado plain with a bit of salt, chunked up in a salad, sliced and added to a sandwich or burger…Let’s face it, you don’t have to do much to make avocado taste great!  Of course the old standby party food you make from it is Guacamole.  That was too easy.  I decided to share something my family has enjoyed from time to time–Sushi!

One of the most famous types of sushi here in the US is the California Roll.  Note–there is no raw fish in this roll–which makes it a great “entry” sushi.

Of course before we can use the Avocado in this recipe we need to be able to cut, pit and peel it.  Here’s a great little trick.  You cut the avocado all the way down to the pit around it horizontally.  Twist the two pieces apart–you’ll get one with the cool hole, another with the pit stuck it.  Set it on the counter and carefully push a sharp knife into the pit.  (note: do not hold it in your hand like I am for this picture–you could have your knife slip off the pit and into your hand below.  I’m actually just holding the avocado with the knife stuck in it and my other hand is holding the camera!)

Now while holding the avocado, grab the knife with your other hand and slowly twist and pull–the pit should come right out on your knife!  If you need slices like we do, just cut the avocado with the skin on and then you can easily peel the little strips off.

On to the recipe–I promise, with just a little bit of practice you can make a California Roll at home!

California Rolls

California Rolls

Ingredients

  • 5-6 C Rice, cold (sushi rice is best)
  • 1/3 C Rice Vinegar
  • 3 TBS Sugar
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • Nori (Seaweed sheets)
  • Avocado
  • Imitation Crab (or real if you splurge)
  • Cucumber
  • Soy Sauce
  • Wasabi and/or Pickled Ginger

Instructions

  • 1. Prepare your sushi rice. In a small bowl combine rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Stir--if the sugar and salt don't dissolve you may want to warm them for a minute or less in the microwave. Then simply mix the dressing into your rice. Personally I put it into a really big bowl and use clean hands.
  • 2. Prepare your rolling mat by wrapping it in plastic mat. If you can't find an "official" mat in the Asian section of your grocery store or a local Asian market you could order one online sub in a bamboo placemat. As a last resort you could just make a sushi cone instead.
  • 3. Place a sheet of Nori on the mat with the short side facing you. Cover it evenly with a layer of rice, leaving the last inch or so of Nori "rice free".
  • 4. Layer strips of your fillings across the rice. Imitation Crab, Avocado and Cucumber.
  • 5. Grab your mat and make your first fold/roll. Once you have the nori/rice rolled over the fillings use your hands to squeeze and press down on the mat to start forming the log/roll shape. Pull the mat back, reposition a bit and make the second roll/fold which should use up all your Nori
  • 6. To "seal" the seam of the roll just dip a finger in some water and rub it along the opening
  • 7. Use the mat to press the roll again and the wet edges should seal together.
  • 8. Slice your sushi roll! To keep your knife from sticking, fill a tall glass with water and dip the knife in between slices.
  • 9. Serve with soy sauce, wasabi and pickled ginger.
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