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Homemade Recipe for Sushi: California Crunchy Roll 8pc

Updated: Aug 15, 2023

Looking for a delicious sushi recipe to try at home? Look no further than the California Crunchy Roll. This mouthwatering roll is a delightful fusion of flavors and textures that will satisfy your sushi cravings. Here's how you can make it:


Total: 50 - 60 minutes

Sushi Rice: 30 - 40 minutes

Prep (Tempura Flakes): 10 - 15 minutes

Rolling: 5 minutes

The California Roll is undeniably an American creation. It is not a traditional Japanese dish but an invention that originated in Los Angeles (although there are a few different accounts). The Crunchy Roll is an inside-out roll that features tempura flakes on the outside, topped with eel sauce, which sets it apart from "authentic" Japanese sushi like Nigiri.

Despite the ongoing debate on whether the Crunchy Roll can be classified as sushi, I must admit I enjoyed it from the first bite. The combination of tempura shrimp inside (recipe here) and the crunchy texture of the tempura flakes outside provided a delightful contrast to other specialty rolls like Rainbow, which typically feature fish on top. Texture plays a significant role in our taste perception, with qualities such as crunchiness, smoothness, mushiness, and runniness adding depth to our culinary experiences.

Like many inside-out rolls, the origins of the Crunchy Roll still need to be determined. Interestingly, the California Roll is one of the few sushi creations whose inventor is known, although there are multiple claims to its origin.

Regardless, I wholeheartedly endorse adding tempura flakes to your inside-out roll. It imparts a pleasant taste and texture that enhances the overall sushi experience. I encourage you to get creative and experiment with different combinations.


Now, let's dive into the recipe for the California Crunchy Roll:

INGREDIENTS (for one roll):

  • 200g (1 cup) Sushi Rice (follow this recipe)

  • 1 Nori Seaweed, half sheet

  • 5 - 7g (1/4 oz) Sesame Seeds, Roasted (white or black)

  • 30 g crabmeat or imitation crabmeat (sticks or flakes)

  • 2pcs ¼ Avocado slices

  • 50g Flour

  • 200 ml. (1cup) Rice Bran Oil (or vegetable oil)

  • Eel or Teriyaki Sauce (follow this recipe)


  • Cutting Board

  • Knife

  • Makisu, Sushi Rolling Mat

  • Pot

  • Small Sheet Pans

  • Paper Towel

  • Tempura (or Mesh) strainer

  • Chopsticks (or spoon)


Making Tempura Flakes

1. Prepare the tempura batter by mixing flour with equal water.

2. Heat the frying oil to 190C/375F. You can test the oil's readiness by dropping a slight tempura batter. The oil is ready if the batter sinks to the bottom and immediately rises to the surface.

3. Drop small amounts of tempura batter into the oil Using a pair of chopsticks or a small spoon.

4. Cook the batter for 20-30 seconds until it turns golden.

5. Remove the flakes from the oil and let them sit on a paper towel to remove excess fat.

Making Inside Out California Roll

(How to spread rice for Inside Out Rolls, Step 2 - 12)

1. Prepare the sushi rice using this recipe.

2. Moisten the cutting board with a wet towel.

3. Place a half sheet of nori horizontally on the cutting board, with the rough side facing up.

4. Wet your hands.

5. Place a tennis ball-sized sushi rice, approximately 200g, on the top left corner of the nori, shaping it like a potato.

6. Using the bottom of your left palm, apply pressure and spread the sushi rice horizontally.

7. make a "U" shape to guide the sushi rice, covering the top half to two-thirds of the nori with your right hand.

8. Turn your left hand three times rhythmically to cover the top portion of the nori with rice.

9. Clean your hands with a wet towel and dip your fingers in water.

10. Using your fingertips, apply pressure and spread the rice from the left, center, and right to the bottom.

11. Spread the sushi rice evenly, covering the entire nori sheet as uniformly as possible, including the top and corners.

12. Flip the nori with sushi rice so the nori side faces up.

13. Place crab meat and avocado slices in the center of the nori.

14. Lift the bottom edge of the nori and roll it tightly, just like rolling a yoga mat. Ensure that the bottom edge lands below the top edge of the nori.

15. Seal the roll, then roll it another 90 degrees forward.

16. Place a plastic-covered sushi rolling mat (makisu) over the roll and squeeze it gently. Remove the plastic cover.

17. Place plastic wrap on the cutting board and spread the tempura flakes evenly over it.

18. Pick up the roll, turn it upside down, and place it over the tempura flakes.

19. Lift the plastic wrap and wrap the roll with the tempura flakes.

20. Roll the sushi so the top part with the tempura flakes faces up.

21. Keep the plastic wrap on and place the sushi rolling mat over it. Squeeze tightly to ensure the tempura flakes stick to the rice.

22. Cut the roll into eight pieces (cut in half first), keeping the plastic wrap on to prevent the tempura flakes from falling off.

23. Plate the California Crunchy Roll and pour eel sauce (or teriyaki sauce) over it.

Now, sit back, relax, and enjoy your delicious homemade California Crunchy Roll!

( Steps 18 - 25)


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