300g rice (short grain)
(To cook short-grained rice)
3 tablespoons vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 dried shiitake mushrooms
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/3 tablespoons (or 20ml) soy sauce
1/2 (or 70g) carrot
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 pods okra
4 slices smoked salmon
2 teaspoons white sesame seeds
Spread cooked rice over a large bowl. Make sushi vinegar by mixing vinegar, sugar and salt. Pour the vinegar over rice in a circular motion and mix quickly. Using a hand fan, fan over the rice surface until the steam dissipates. Set aside 1/3 of the sushi rice and mix in the sesame seeds.
Squeeze the rehydrated dried shiitake mushrooms, remove the stems and cut the hoods into thin slices. Boil 300ml of water and shiitake slices in a pot with the lid on. When it comes to a boil, simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. Add the soy sauce and sugar and cook uncovered until there is almost no liquid remaining.
Cut the carrot into strips 3cm long and 2mm wide. Boil 200ml of water in a pan and cook the carrot strips for 5 minutes on low heat. Add the sugar and salt and cook for another 5 minutes. For both shiitake slices and carrot strips, let them sit in the pan after stopping heat to cool, so they can absorb flavor.
Rub a pinch of salt over okra pods to defuzz them. Boil the salted okra pods for 1 minute. After cooling them in icy cold water, cut off the stems and chop the okra into thin slices.
Break an egg in a bowl, add a pinch of salt and beat well. Heat a frying pan and spread a thin coating of oil. After making sure the temperature of the frying pan is just right, pour the egg mix into the pan, swirl it around, and fry over low heat.
When it is cooked, turn off the heat and flip the crepe over. After the other side is cooked, slice the crepe into 4cm-wide strips, stack them and cut them into thin strings 4cm long.
Prepare a cake tin 16 to 18cm in size and cardboard cut in a circle that fits just inside the tin. Line the tin with plastic wrap. Spread half of white sushi rice in the bottom of the tin. Then, over the rice, place drained shiitake slices, then the rest of white sushi rice, then drained carrot slices, and finally, sushi rice with sesame seeds.
It’s important to remember to pack each layer of rice firmly with the circle cardboard lined with plastic wrap.
Cut the 4 slices of smoked salmon in half lengthwise and wrap each piece around a chopstick and shape it into a rose form. Pull out the chopstick once you have the shape right. Put 2 to 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise into a small plastic bag and close the mouth of the bag (with a rubber band).
Keep the sushi cake inside the tin when carrying it to the party. Put the okra slices, egg strips and smoked salmon roses in containers and take them with you.
At the party, take out the sushi cake from the tin and place the cake on a plate. Sprinkle egg strips over the top. Cut 5mm off one corner of the mayonnaise bag and squeeze it out, circling the top rim of the cake. Arrange the okra slices over the mayonnaise and decorate with salmon roses.