Simple Salmon Roll: How to Make Hosomaki Sushi Like a Pro


The Essential Equipment to Make Sushi at Home

by Bryan Sekine in Blog, Raw Sushi, Sushi Tutorials
April 19, 2015
Finished Salmon Roll

In the early days of sushi, having actual rolls was very rare. When they did start creating sushi rolls, they were hosomaki.

Hosomaki literally translates as “skinny roll” and usually only comes with 1-2 ingredients. This is considered to be one of the most traditional styles of sushi maki (rolls).

In this post, I will be making a Salmon Roll in the hosomaki style.

For the recipe, you will need:

How to Make the Salmon Roll

1. Once your sushi rice is cooked, seasoned, and cooled (more information: How to Make Sushi Rice), place a small handful of rice on the rough side of your nori.

Rice for a hosomaki


Notice how I didn’t put any rice on the top edge? Make sure leave at least 2cm of nori bare at the top of the roll.

2. Using four fingers on both hands, gently press the rice along the center to create a “valley.”

Rice valley for a Salmon Roll


3. Slice rectangular pieces of salmon for your roll. I made a 1 cm thick slice and then sliced that in half:

Salmon fillet


Salmon sliced for a salmon roll


4. Place the slices onto your rice along the “valley” you created in step 2:

Salmon Roll ingredients


Notice how the slices of salmon don’t reach the edges and how there’s a slight gap between them? To fix this, remove the salmon and slice them diagonally, from corner to corner:

sliced salmon

Add them back to roll and slide them out to fill the gap and meet each end:

Salmon Roll


5. This is the trickiest part. You need to dip your fingers in your water and transfer the water to the top portion of the nori. This will make the nori soggy and it will quickly start to curl.

Before the nori starts to curl, you need to roll the salmon roll up until the smooth side of the nori meets the wet portion. This will make it so that the nori sticks to itself and gives clean looking results. For more info on the technique of rolling sushi, click here.

Salmon Roll whole


6. Now that our salmon roll is all put together, it’s time to cut. Slice the roll in half, and then put the two halves together and slice them into thirds:

hosomaki cut in half


sliced hosomaki


As you can see, I still need to work on my 1/3 slices. Having spacial recognition and being able to eye 1/2’s and 1/3’s is really beneficial when making sushi at home. Otherwise, you will need to practice a lot to get even looking pieces.

**Pro Tip – It helps to get your knife slightly wet before slicing any roll. Be careful not to get it too wet, as it could make the nori tear easily. I usually aim for just a few beads of water on my knife. 

7. Turn the end pieces up, so that we can see that pretty salmon and then transfer it to a plate.

Finished Salmon Roll


I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! I’d love to hear about your thoughts and see some pictures of your own hosomaki sushi! You can post a picture of your sushi in the Disqus Comments box, below.

For more awesome sushi tips and secret, mini-tutorials, be sure to grab my free ebook: 13 Ways to Tell if a Sushi Restaurant is Worth Trying




The Essential Equipment to Make Sushi at Home