Posted 31st August 2011
For me, there are very few foods that I wouldn’t attempt to make at home, no matter how difficult. I’m not saying they turn out well every time (my soufflés were so sad and deflated they made me want to cry), but I’d say I’m fairly adventurous when it comes to trying my culinary hand at things.
Sushi, however, has always been a different matter. For some reason, despite there being few things I love more than really good sushi, I’ve never been able to muster the confidence to try it at home. Enter…Your Sushi!
Your Sushi are the only nationwide sushi cookery school in the UK. Founded by French chef Emmanuel Letellier, they hold regular workshops in pretty much all of the major cities around the UK, and host various different courses, either at local cookery schools or even at your home.
Becci and I attended the Sushi ‘Masterchef’ course at Bourdeaux Quay cookery school, and were joined by eight other like mindedfoodies, and of course, our fantastically enthusiastic teacher for the day.
The course was 3 hours long, which may seem lengthy, but in reality, flew by. The set up was low key, and quite intimate, with everyone seated around one large table, sharing ingredients and utensils. We started with some of the basics, such as a few sushi facts (Nori is made of algae, not seaweed!) and a very comprehensive talk through on how to cook the sushi rice to sticky perfection. It was then on to our first type of sushi-Hosomaki. Translating as ‘thin rolls’, these are the mini, bite-sized pieces you’ll often see served in half a dozen at Sushi restaurants, and are probably the easiest type to make. I’ll admit, sushi making isn’t for the slap dash cook, as delicacy and precision are key, but the satisfaction you get from producing a presentable (albeit not perfect) little set of Hosomaki is well worth the time you put into them!
Over the course of the three hours we made Futomaki (fat rolls), Nigiri (sushi balls topped with wasabi and fish), Temaki (the conical hand rolls created by Japanese immigrants to the USA after the end of the second world war), and most impressively, Inside Out Sushi, where the filling is wrapped in the Nori, then coated in rice.
By the end of the course we were left with our beautiful bento boxes, full to bursting with our homemade sushi, and had eaten so much throughout the class that I was left wondering how I was going to manage the contents of my bento box! There wasn’t one person in the entire class who struggled, or came away with sushi that looked anything less than professional, and I’d put that down to the laid back, informative teaching style of the chef who led the course, as opposed to our culinary skills! She was attentive without being pushy, and encouraging without being patronising-the perfect balance in my opinion.
At £125, the course isn’t cheap, but prices tend to be reduced nearer the time, and were down to £50 a class by the time we attended. Either way, the skills we learnt during the few hours we were there were plenty enough for me to come away feeling confident that I’d be able to knock up some sushi of my own in the future, and the class was full of such a lovely group of people that it was a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon.
Find out more at http://www.yoursushishop.com/