"Save Our Seas" Vegan Sushi
I've always liked sushi, but was never a fan of the "fish" aspect of it. Now that I know that eating fish (with its high degree of saturated fat, cholesterol, animal protein and pollution) is not good for my health, I've discovered how to get those essential fatty acids from plant foods. And because the fishing industry destroys our ocean ecosystems and especially the fish themselves, I am so grateful to have come up with my own version of Vegan Sushi, which I love to make almost every week. In fact, this Vegan Sushi is my most-requested live cooking workshop.
If you want to make this Vegan Sushi at home, it is well worth taking the 20 minutes to watch the "How to Roll Vegan Sushi" video (below, taken during one of my live workshops) and to read through all the steps of this recipe so you can see how I slice the veggies so thin and so you can decide what you want to include in your Vegan Sushi rolls that first time. Once you make it one time, you will never need a recipe or directions for rolling again and you will already have all the ingredients on hand for the next time so it will be easy-peasy. I suggest getting a few bamboo sushi rolling mats (I get mine on Amazon and use one for each person in the family or for a dinner party) because everyone is going to want to give it a try!
Let's get rolling!
What you need to roll your Vegan Sushi:
1 Ziploc bag per mat
Sushi Nori (seaweed sheets, toasted or raw)
1 knife with a serrated (toothed) edge for cutting sushi rolls
1 small bowl filled with water, per person rolling
Separate cutting board for cutting rolled sushi
Sliced (thin) veggies of your choice
Condiments of your choice: Tamari, wasabi, sriracha sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame seeds, wasabi, pickled ginger
Ingredients for rolling 3 rolls of Vegan Sushi (which feeds approx. 2 people):
3 cups cooked sushi rice (1 cup dry)
6 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
3 pieces Nori
6 pieces asparagus
1/2 avocado sliced thinly
6 thin slivers cucumber (avoiding the seeded area)
6 thin slivers carrot
10 slivers cabbage
10 slivers red (or any color) pepper
3 scallions (or more), white and green parts
10 large spinach leaves, slivered
All these veggies and sesame seeds (except the Nori) are optional - feel free to choose your own combination based on your family's tastes or what you have on hand.
How to create and roll Vegan Sushi
Step 1: Prepare the rice
Cook the sushi rice according to your specific package directions. Allow to cool and mix in the rice wine vinegar with wet hands (it is very sticky).
Step 2: Prepare your rolling station
Place your bamboo mat inside the Ziploc bag and seal so the seal appears on the left side when the mat is placed with slats horizontally in front of you on a table or counter. Fill a bowl of water for dipping fingers and your knife when working with the very sticky rice!
Step 3: Prepare your fillings.
Steam asparagus until fork tender and place in ice water to retain color and firmness. Dry and set aside. Next, using a peeler, peel of the outer skin of a cucumber and a carrot. Use the peeler down the length of the vegetable to create the thin slices of each vegetable (as shown in the photo below) and set aside. Next, take one half an avocado and run the knife through it vertically to create thin slices. Use a spoon to scoop the slivers out of the avocado peel and set aside. Either use a large knife to chop thin silvers of cabbage and peppers or use a mandolin slicer like this Zyliss Slicer which is what I use to make quick work of thin slivers, and set aside. Pile up the spinach leaves one on top of another and use a knife to slice thin slivers and set aside. Next, remove the outer layer of each scallion, trim off the roots (and discard or save and plant!) and use a knife to cut thin rounds of both the white and green parts, the chop crosswise. I place all my fillings in little piles on a cutting board or mat for easy access while rolling, as shown.
Step 4: Assemble
Take one sheet Nori, shiny side up, and place it horizontally on the mat in front of you. Dip fingers in water ball and take approximately 1 cup (or one handful) of cooked Sushi rice and place it on top of the Nori. Wet fingers again and gently press down and spread the rice across your Nori. When rice begins to stick to your fingers, wet them again and continue spreading, gently pressing down until the Nori is covered with a thin layer of rice. (See video - this does not have to be perfect!) Then assemble desired veggies over the the mayo sauce in that thin (2-inch) row closest to you (see below). You can sprinkle sesame seeds now or not.