The heart of sushi is the rice. Without rice there would not be sushi. The very word “sushi” means “vinegared rice.” There are a number of important factors to successful, delicious sushi rice. First, you must use white, short or medium grain rice which will give a soft, sticky consistency. Secondly, you must use a rice cooker. An electric rice cooker is essential for perfect, no-fail rice for sushi.

Yield: approx.

  • 3 cups of cooked rice
  • 3 cups short or medium grain white rice (use the plastic measuring cup that comes with your rice cooker)
  • 4 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Measure the rice accurately in the plastic measuring cup that comes with your Zojirushi rice cooker. Pour the rice into a bowl and wash the rice in cold water, rubbing the grains gently between the palms of your hand. Drain and repeat 3 or 4 times. Soak the rice in cold water for 15 to 20 minutes until the grains turn a milky white.

In a small bowl combine the rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Set aside.

Drain the rice and transfer it to the inner cooking pan of the rice cooker. Add water to the level “3” as indicated in the embossed markings in the rice cooker pan. Cover, plug in the rice cooker and switch the cooker on. The rice cooker will automatically cook the rice. When the rice is done, let it “rest” in the covered rice cooker for 15 minutes to completely absorb any excess moisture.

Loosen the cooked rice from the pot by prying the rice away from the sides of the pan with the nonstick rice spatula. Dump all the rice at once into a large, wide, shallow dish. (Avoid using metal since the vinegar may react with the metal and produce an unpleasant taste). Run the edge of the spatula across the rice in a cross hatching motion to break up the rice. Pour the vinegar mixture evenly over the hot rice and with the spatula begin mixing the vinegar into the rice with a gentle, folding motion. The vinegar seasoning must be mixed into hot rice for proper absorption. As you are folding in the vinegar mixture, fan the rice briskly with a hand or electric fan. (An assistant would be useful here. If you have to do it yourself alternate fanning with folding). Continue fanning and mixing until the rice has cooled to body temperature and appears glossy.

Now your sushi rice is seasoned and ready to be formed into sushi.

Note: Some advanced models of Zojirushi rice cookers have a special “Sushi Rice” setting that will automatically adjust the cooking time and temperature for sushi rice.

You could enjoy "Sushi Roll" and "Chirashi Sushi" using "Sushi Rice".