A Boston sushi roll is similar to California roll. It’s a simple but decadent roll that is also made with Nori seaweed sheets, seasoned rice and veggies.
The main difference is that instead of crab meat, a Boston sushi roll uses poached shrimp.
A Boston sushi roll is an inside-out sushi roll where the rice is on the outside, while the nori and the filling are inside. It is garnished on top with the orange flying fish roe, tobiko or a similar food called masago.
The Boston shrimp roll is perfect for those who are not thrilled by typical sushi with raw fish since it makes use of poached shrimp. Classic sushi from Japan is traditionally made with fresh and raw fish, but the Boston roll is a U.S. variation that celebrates shrimp fishing in the Boston area. Plus, it’s delicious.
Without further ado, let’s get cracking.
What is a Boston Sushi Roll?
As explained, the Boston sushi roll is a type of roll that is made with poached shrimp, cucumber, avocado, Nori sheets and seasoned rice. After the sushi is rolled, it is covered with the flying fish roe or tobiko.
This type of sushi has the rice outside. You will achieve that by cutting the Nori sheet in half, and spreading it over the rice. Afterwards, flip the Nori sheet, positioning the rice on the outer side.
Place the avocado and cucumbers with the shrimp over the Nori sheet, making sure you do not overfill or it will be hard to roll and seal the sushi properly.
Tobiko is crunchy, salty, and with a hint of smoky flavor. It is a small type of fish roe, that comes in a delightful red-orange color. The texture is perfect complement the soft rice outer layer of your roll.
There is nothing better that biting into a Boston roll, whether it’s covered with flying fish roe or tobiko.
Getting the Right Ingredients
The right ingredients will make or break any meal, but that seems to be even more true when it comes to sushi. Let’s talk about each ingredient carefully, so your meal doesn’t suffer.
Preparing Your Rice
Great sushi rolls start with great rice. For good sushi, choose high-quality short grain rice that is classified as a sushi rice.
For cooking sushi rice, you will need less water than you generally do with plain rice. The best ratio for sushi rice is 1:1 or 1 cup of rice to 1 cup of water.
Once you’ve cooked the rice, transfer it to a bowl and let cool slightly. Still, do not allow it to cool completely. While the rice is very warm, stir in some rice vinegar. If you do not have rice vinegar, you can use white wine vinegar with a pinch of salt and a ½ teaspoon of sugar.
The another key ingredient is the shrimp. Fresh shimp is simply the best. This is a sushi roll, after all.
I poach the shrimp myself by placing them in simmering water for 3-5 minutes. Instead of poaching you can always fry the shrimp tempura-style. This will give some extra crunchiness to your sushi.
After you have prepared these, it is time for fresh avocado and cucumber. Choose the ripest avocado and the freshest cucumbers you can find.
An avocado that has a slightly changed skin color, just having gone from green to a bit brownish, is perfect. You can also check by removing the stem and looking at the naval. If the stem is hard to remove then the avocado is not ripe yet.
As for the cucumbers, choose those that feel firm and look plump are ideal. Cut the cucumbers and avocado into “matchsticks”, or tiny, thin, and long pieces.
There are Nori sheets that cost only few cents per pack, while there are Nori sheets that cost $3-4 per sheet. When choosing your Nori sheets you’re usually best off going with the medium-priced options.
Besides looking at the price when choosing a Nori sheet, pay attention to color, spot holes and overall appearance, because even the best Nori can degrade through the time.
High-quality Nori is a jet black sheet with a shiny sheen to it. It has that umami flavor – the natural sweetness we love. Cheap Nori has a strong fishy smell and is usually brown or light green. I advise you to stay away from these.
I usually go with dark green Nori that has no holes and breaks easily when folded in half.
Tobiko Substitutes – Is It Possible?
I would not suggest that you change tobiko for anything else. Most people use masago as a tobiko substitute, but it is not just the same thing.
Masago is smaller and less expensive, but has a dull yellow color. Masago does have a flavor similar to tobiko, but does not offer that unique crunchiness.
Although tobiko and masago may seem similar, there is a reason people go with tobiko, as it is truly a high-end sushi ingredient. You can’t beat that amazing combination of crunch and flavor.
All that’s left is to track down a good soy sauce and enjoy a great meal!
How to Make Boston Roll Sushi
Note: As the sushi rice is sticky, I suggest you make a mixture of ¼ cup water and 2 tbsp rice vinegar. This will prevent rice from sticking to your hands.
You will also need a bamboo sushi mat to make this roll.
Place the bamboo mat in front of you.
Cover it with a piece of plastic foil. This will prevent the rice from sticking at the mat.
Cut the Nori sheet in half (you can use scissors), and place on the bamboo mat.
Spread half the rice over Nori sheet. Flip the rice and Nori (I lift it with the plastic foil) so that the rice is on the bottom and the Nori is on top.
Peel and slice the avocado and cucumber into matchstick shapes. I also like to remove the cucumber seeds.
Place avocado, cucumbers, and shrimp on top of the Nori sheet.
Place your thumbs underneath the bamboo mat and lift gently. Start folding the sushi, but watch out not to roll the bamboo mat in it.
Remove the bamboo mat and remove the plastic foil. Cover the sushi with tobiko.
Cover the sushi again with the plastic foil and place over the bamboo mat so the tobiko stick to the sushi roll.
Let it stand for 5 minutes.
Repeat the process to use the remaining ingredients.
Slice the sushi and serve.
- 2 tbsp tobiko
- 3 oz. poached shrimp
- 1 Nori sheet, cut in half
- 1 avocado
- 1 small cucumber
- Peel and slice the avocado and cucumber into matchstick shapes. You may wish to remove the cucumber seeds.
- Place the bamboo mat in front of you.
- Cover it with a piece of plastic foil. This will prevent the rice from sticking at the mat.
- Cut the Nori sheet in half (you can use scissors), and place on the bamboo mat.
- Spread half the rice over Nori sheet. Flip the rice and Nori (I lift it with the plastic foil) so that the rice is on the bottom and the Nori is on top.
- Place avocado, cucumbers, and shrimp on top of the Nori sheet.
- Place your thumbs underneath the bamboo mat and lift gently. Start folding the sushi, but watch out not to roll the bamboo mat in it.
- Remove the bamboo mat and remove the plastic foil. Cover the sushi with tobiko.
- Cover the sushi again with the plastic foil and place over the bamboo mat so the tobiko stick to the sushi roll.
- Let it stand for 5 minutes.
- Repeat the process to use the remaining ingredients.
- Slice the sushi and serve.
As the sushi rice is sticky, I suggest you make a mixture of ¼ cup water and 2 tbsp rice vinegar. This will prevent rice from sticking to your hands.
You will need a bamboo sushi mat to make this roll.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 30Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 53mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 2g
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