Sushi rice needs to be prepared on the day it’s being used, if it’s refrigerated the texture changes completely – it becomes too hard.
2 cups short-grain sushi rice (see notes)
65ml Japanese rice vinegar
15ml mirin (see notes)
2 tablespoons castor sugar
Pinch fine salt
Wash rice under cold running water until water runs clear then drain well and place in a rice cooker with water and cook.
Meanwhile, combine vinegar, mirin, sugar and salt and stir until sugar and salt dissolve.
Turn cooked rice into a non-metallic bowl, pour vinegar mixture evenly over it and use a wooden paddle to gently fold it through, breaking up any lumps; ideally have someone fan the rice to cool it quickly while you’re folding the vinegar through.
Once cool, cover with a clean, damp cloth until needed – do not refrigerate.
The cup measurement for sushi rice refers to a standard 250ml cup, not the smaller cups that come with most rice cookers.
Mirin is a sweet Japanese fortified rice wine used for cooking. True mirin (labelled ‘hon mirin’) contains alcohol, so what is available in supermarkets and Asian grocery stores, and normally used, is non-alcoholic ‘mirin seasoning’.
If you don’t have a rice cooker, cook rice in a saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, bring to the boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and leave to stand, covered, for 10 minutes.