How to Make Traditional Sushi Rice

    Don’t be put off by the 1½ hours total time needed to complete this version of sushi rice. Most of it is hands-off time. For your patience, you will be rewarded with perfectly flavored rice that spreads easily.
    Prep Time: 50 minutes
    Cook Time: 40 minutes
    Makes about 6 cups (1 kg)
    2½ cups (500 g) short-grain white rice
    2½ cups (625 ml) water, minus 3 tablespoons
    ¾ cup (185 ml) Sushi Rice Dressing (page 20)
    Place the rice in a medium bowl and cover with cool water. Gently swish the rice in a circular motion with your hand, taking care not to break the grains apart, then pour the water off. Repeat three times.
    Place the rice in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse it with cool water. The runoff water should begin to look clear. Allow the rice to drain in the strainer for 10 minutes.
    Place the rice and measured water in a rice cooker. Once the rice cooker is started, cook for exactly 40 minutes. Most likely the cooker will indicate that the rice is done before 40 minutes have elapsed, but be patient. Do not lift the lid or stop the process before the time is up.
    While the rice cooks, soak a wooden spoon or rice paddle in a shallow bowl of water. This will prevent the cooked rice from sticking to the paddle while tossing with the Sushi Rice Dressing.
    Dump the steamed rice onto a large, flat cutting board. With the soaked wooden spoon or paddle, gently “cut” the rice into pieces like a pie. Pour ¼ cup (65 ml) of the Sushi Rice Dressing over the rice and toss well. Continue adding the Sushi Rice Dressing in ¼ cup (65 ml) portions to the rice, tossing well after each addition. Spread the rice into a thin layer and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Gently flip the rice over with the soaked wooden spoon or paddle and let it cool for another 5 minutes.
    Place the rice in a large non-metal bowl or container and cover with a damp lint-free dishcloth until ready for use. Use the rice within 4 hours.