One of the most successful national teams in Asia, Japan has qualified for the last six FIFA World Cups. Although their principal football rivals on the continent are South Korea and Australia, they’ll have to face Colombia, Senegal and Poland to be in with a chance of winning the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. The country’s cuisine is based on combining staple foods—like rice or noodles—with soup or fish, vegetables and tofu. Sushi, Japan’s most well-known dish, is eaten and revered around the world.
680g sushi rice, rinsed and drained
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp caster sugar
4 nori sheets
1 avocado, cut into chunks
300g raw salmon
Soy sauce, to serve
1. Prepare rice as instructed by the package.
2. Place vinegar and sugar in a microwave-safe jug and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Transfer rice to a large dish, mix and break up lumps. Slowly add vinegar mixture until rice has cooled.
3. Place 1 nori sheet, shiny side down, on a sushi mat. With damp fingers, spread 200g rice over the sheet, leaving a 2cm strip on one short end. Arrange 1/4 avocado and salmon over the centre of rice. Using the mat, form a firm roll. Cut into 6 slices. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Serve with soy sauce.