Whether it be hosting a gathering during the holidays, a company party you are planning or simply a get together with friends or family, stepping out of the box with a unique party idea not only adds some fun but also a little spontaneity. Aiko, a friend of mine, who owns a plumbing & heating company with her husband was looking to plan a fun party this past holiday season for their employees. They wanted something a little less traditional that would also incorporate a feeling of team bonding and of course great food. Aiko who is originally from Japan decided to head back to her roots and utilize her ability to create delicious sushi! So what did she do? She opted for a “You Make the Roll” DIY sushi party! The idea of this party theme is all in the name. Not only was it a big hit amongst her employees, it also created togetherness and a lot of fun and creativity to be had! So how do you go about creating your own sushi party?
How to Create Your Own Sushi Party
- Utensils- first thing first you want to make sure you have sushi making “equipment”. This entails bamboo sushi making mats, a couple sharp knives, hand dipping bowls filled with water and a couple tsp. of rice wine vinegar (this helps so that rice won’t stick to the party goers hands) chopsticks, small dipping ramekins for sauces, rice paddles and dinnerware
- Sushi Rice-Next you will need to prepare the sushi rice and prepare it correctly for the best sushi results. You will need to prepare the rice at least 4 hours prior to the start of sushi making and allow it to stand covered at room temperature until you are ready to start rolling.
- Nori- Don’t forget the seaweed sheets that are an essential part of making sushi.
- Choose Fillings- You will need to choose a handful of sushi fillings and have them prepared in separate dishes. It’s best to decide on a few rolls that are easy to make such as California Rolls and prep that specific filling. Ex: imitation crab sticks, avocado & cucumber. You can also print and copy a few recipe cards to help your guests create specific rolls with ingredients lists and a couple of easy directions to follow.
- Condiments- Don’t forget the condiments, these may be almost as important as the sushi itself. The three main condiments are soy sauce, fresh ginger, and wasabi. However, you may want to include oyster sauce, furikake and other sushi additions that can enhance your rolls.
- Sides, Desserts & other fare- While sushi is definitely the main focus it’s always good to have extra dishes or food on hand as well. Having different sides out to accompany the rolls that are made or small dishes to snack on like edamame while the sushi making is in progress will keep your guests from starving and nice addition to the sushi rolling going on. You van always had tempura shrimp, teriyaki chicken etc. Check out some of the best Japanese dishes that go with sushi and pick your favs!
Another fun twist you can add to the fun of sushi making is also another idea from my friend Aiko. She had her plumbing employees create unique rolls and name them. They then put on a sushi contest even handing out prizes to the person who came up with the most creative roll, the most delicious roll, and the best use of ingredients. We always knew that Japanese cuisine was quite fabulous but who knew that it could be a great theme for a party or get together providing incredible food, fun and entertainment.