Last week I took a Sushi making class at the Chopping Block in Lincoln Square. I brought my camera along to snap some shots and was a little nervous to document everything for fear of my sushi being absolutely horrid.
Our class began by Chef Mario telling us a little bit about sushi history. It was definitely interesting to hear the evolution of sushi and how it came to be today. He dispelled quite a few sushi myths for us along the way and I learned that sushi didn't really originate in Japan, but China instead. It wasn't until sushi was brought to Japan that is started to take on the look it has today though. We also learned that while sushi is a real "dining experience" in this country it started as more of a "fast food" over in Japan.
We learned to make three different kinds of rolls in the class: regular rolls, inside out rolls and hand rolls. At my favorite sushi restaurant in Chicago Toro, I usually get a lot of inside out rolls so I was really excited to learn how to make those.
In my regular roll I added spicy tuna that Chef Mario had prepared, avocado and cucumber. In my inside out roll I had cucumber and shrimp tempura. And in my hand roll I put regular tuna, cucumber and Sriracha and Kewpie mayo. Let me tell you a little bit about this mayo, it is AMAZING!!! I am not a huge mayo fan but this stuff is awesome! I bought some at the Chopping Block and plan on making an epic BLT with it. And another fun fact is that recently Sriracha recently overtook Ketchup in the most worldwide sales of any condiment!
One of the best parts of the class was that Chef Mario gave us a few good location tips for purchasing sushi grade fish. And I'm going to share those with you as well!
Dirks on Clybourn came highly recommended by Chef Mario as well as the Fish Guy on Elston. Chef Mario also recommended for starting sushi chefs tuna is a good fish to use as it can easily be found in the "sushi or sashimi grade" variety and is pretty safe.
I'm Stephanie Eats Chicago and I'm always up for any sort of eating adventure! I live in Lincoln Park and love exploring all of Chicago's neighborhoods, cooking, alfresco dining, running and being outside (esp in the summer). I try and cook at least one great meal every week and love sharing my new recipes with friends and family. I love blogging for ChicagoNow as it's a way to do three of my favorite things all in one: write, eat/cook and experiment with social and digital media!