Not so hard with this recipe:

Ingredients: (to keep shanoyu happy)

  1. Place sushi rice in a coverable pot (one cup for five normal rolls of maki is a good rule of thumb)
  2. Add an equal volume of water to the pot (i.e. for one cup of rice, add one cup of water)
  3. Bring the pot to a boil. If you're using a gas stove, allow it to boil for one minute.
  4. Cover the pot, and lower it to a simmer. (On an electric stove, you may need to uncover it for a few seconds early on so it doesn't boil over. Don't do this too often, or else too much of the steam will escape.)
  5. Allow it to cook for 20 minutes.
  6. Remove the pot from the heat. Depending on taste, allow it to sit from 5 to 20 minutes. (I usually let it sit 5.) This step is rather important; it softens the rice, as it's continuing to steam with the latent heat you've just been pumping into it for the last 20 minutes.
  7. Transfer the contents of the pot into a cool bowl. Add mirin, sake, or rice vinegar (in descending order of preference) by gradually cutting it in (preferrably with a bamboo paddle or wooden spoon). (If you must be precise, use one tablespoon per cup of uncooked rice.)
  8. Keep on stirring (by cutting) for a while until it's cooled off somewhat (it helps to have a fan blowing over it).
  9. Make sushi.
  10. Serve.
  11. Enjoy.
Oh, yeah, shanoyu also insists that I tell you that you should rinse and drain the rice first because they used to use talc to preserve and separate the grains, but they don't use talc anymore (at least, not in any of the half-dozen imported-from-Japan brands of rice I've used), probably because it's toxic and is also a suspected carcinogen (which is why they don't use it anymore, and just use rice flour these days, and have for a decade at least). However, to keep E2 from getting sued for having (smirk) incorrect information, I will say, just in case you're using a 20-year-old bag of rice which happens to use talc to separate the grains, that you should wash it first.

Don't you hate conversations like that? "Give them a list of ingredients beforehand." "Okay (even though it's redundant in this case)." "I insist that you tell them to rinse it first so they don't eat talc and die! You don't want E2 getting sued, do you?" "They don't use talc anymore, they use rice flour because talc's poisonous." "Yes but even so... Well it's your node." Okay, whatever. See macabre caution signs for my take on this whole "Think of the children!" crap. Also see how people think saccharin and red M&Ms are carcinogenic because of statistical clustering and a deprecated ingredient, respectively.

That said, if you want to make the rice as a side dish (for, say, sashimi), leave out the mirin/sake/vinegar, and use 4/3 cups of water for every 1 cup of rice, and uncover the rice immediately after the 20 minutes are up (rather than allowing it to sit in its own steam for a while).

While I've never tried it with sake, I've experienced that the rice vinegar method tastes a lot better if add one tablespoon of sugar and one teaspoon of salt (per tablespoon of vinegar) to the solution. Let it boil up briefly and cool down, then mix it in with the rice.

As magenta so lovingly pointed out, the above can also be used as a recipe for Mirin if the Rice Vinegar is replaced with Sake.

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