Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pork and Green Chile Sushi

Tex-Asian fusion cooking is one of my favorites.  Here I am going to take some of my hardwood smoked pork and roll it into sushi with some green chiles.  What got me thinking about pork and green chile is something that I used to get at Poncho's, which is Green Chile Stew.  Obviously the stew is not going to work inside of sushi, so we'll use the star ingredients of the stew in the sushi.  We'll start with some Jasmine Rice.
Make sure you wash the rice thoroughly before cooking it, otherwise it will be too sticky.  Washing the rice removes some of the gluten, which is what makes the rice sticky.  While the rice is cooking I'll prepare some of the items that will go into the sushi rolls.
I had smoked this pork earlier in the week, and its good by itself, but I want to give it a little Asian flair.  To do this I will apply some Teriyaki sauce.  Also we want to slice the pork into pieces that work in the sushi.
 I'll put the pork in a cool oven, about 225 degrees Fahrenheit, to warm it up and let the Teriyaki get into the Pork.
When the rice is done cooking we will add some rice wine vinegar, aerate, and cool the rice so we can handle it with our hands to make the sushi rolls.
Now for the green chiles.  I am going to chargrill the chiles.  I had started this with a torch, but it kept going out, so would up using the gas grill.
What you want to do with the Chiles is to blacked the skin.  As the flames work on the Chiles the skin will bluster and turn black.  They need to be turned often and cook really fast with open fire.

After they are blackened we'll put them in a plastic sack, and seal it to let the steam from the Chiles loosen and rehydrate the skin.  Then we will peel the skin off the Chiles, clean out the seeds, remove the Calyx, and finally slice them into strips for the Sushi.
I also sliced some Cucumbers to get a little crunch in the Sushi.  This is where you have creative license.  You can really put anything into Sushi, like black beans, or scrambled eggs.
OK, now we have the vegetables prepared, and the Pork prepared, and the Rice prepared so we can get to the rolling part.  You don't actually need a Sushi rolling mat, but it does help.  This one was about $2 at the local Asian market.  You will also need Nori paper.  Nori paper is Algae, which is formed into sheets and dehydrated.  Nori is extremely nutritious.
So, first put the mat down, and the Nori paper, and apply the rice to the Nori paper.  You sort of have to make the Rice stick to the Nori.  It helps to keep your fingers moist when working with the Sushi Rice.  It help to prevent the Rice from sticking to and globbing up on your fingers.  Also leave about an inch of Nori at the top so that you can seal the roll.
After adding the rice we'll add the Cucumber, and the green Chile.  Here at this point you can add seasoning, and or other flavors.  Some people add Wasabi, or Pickled Ginger inside the Sushi, while I will leave those on the side.
Next we'll add the pork.  You don't want to add too much inside the Sushi because you will have trouble rolling it.  If you need more, make more rolls.
Use the Sushi mat to roll up the Sushi applying pressure to the roll to make it tight.  Apply some water to the exposed Nori we left on the top, and press it against to outside of the Nori to seal it.
Then more the whole roll over to the cutting board to slice it into pieces.  If you wet the knife, and keep it clean of rice, it will slice easier than if you are using a dry knife.  I serve the Pork and Green Chile Sushi with a some Wasabi paste, and pickled Ginger on the side, with Soy Sauce.

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