Sunday, February 13, 2011

Vegetarian Sushi

Meals have been difficult to coordinate this week!  Deanna is in the thick of drama practice, and so is either not home, or running in and back out again, so my meal plan only sort of worked and the parts that did work were those things that she could grab whenever without too much loss of quality if it sat for awhile.

One of the successes was the vegetarian sushi I made up yesterday - we love this stuff, but I've not made it since the weather turned cold.  It's easy, fast, and makes for good finger food whether you grab one piece on the run, or sit down to a plateful with wasabi and ginger slices.

Vegetarian Sushi
makes approx. 32 pieces

2 cups sushi rice
2 cups water
3 T. rice vinegar
2 T. sugar
1 T. salt
1 cucumber, sliced into sticks
1 avocado, peeled, halved, and sliced
3 oz block cream cheese, sliced into thin sticks
4 square nori wrappers
sesame seeds (black sesame seeds are good, regular ones are fine)
wasabi paste
pickled ginger slices
soy sauce (I prefer ponzu sauce, which is less strong tasting, so doesn't overwhelm)

Make the sushi rice:  Rinse the raw rice several times in cold water before putting into saucepan.  Add 2 cups cold water and bring to boil.  Once it begins boiling, cover and lower heat.   Cook for 15 minutes.  Remove from heat and let sit another 10 minutes.

While rice is sitting, combine rice vinegar, sugar and salt in a small microwave safe container, and heat for approximately 45 seconds. (You want this to be heated through, not cooked).   Set aside and slice fillings and prepare wrappers.

Using a brimmed cookie sheet, spread rice evenly in the sheet and let sit another couple minutes so that it reaches room temperature, then drizzle rice vinegar blend over rice and use a couple forks to blend the rice so that every grain is coated with the vinegar.

The easiest way to roll sushi is to have a small mat designed for the purpose.  In a pinch, try using a flat silicon mat or even a flour tortilla - the idea is to use the tool to roll and compress the sushi, but not roll the tool INTO the sushi.

Lay a sheet of nori on the mat, and spread a layer of sushi rice over the nori, covering the entire wrapper.  If desired, sprinkle rice with sesame seeds.

On the side closest to you, lay out thin strips of filling - avocado, cucumber and cream cheese. (Obviously, you can use all sorts of fillings here - cooked carrot strips add color and a bit of crunch.  I don't recommend more than 3 fillings, or it winds up being too large.) 

Using the mat, roll up the sushi, gently compressing and shaping until it is entirely rolled up.  Set sushi roll aside, seam side down.  Repeat with remaining rice, wrappers and filling.  The rolls benefit from sitting for a few minutes before slicing.

To slice, use a serrated knife - you may need to wet the blade to avoid sticking.  Cut each roll into bite sized slices - I generally get 10 slices, but the end pieces tend to fall apart - don't toss those!  Keep a bowl on hand for the 'oops, my sushi slice fell apart' bits.

These are better before they've been refrigerated, but they will hold up a few hours in the refrigerator (and will be fine the next day if you don't use avocado in them).  Serve with soy sauce, wasabi and pickled ginger slices.

Now, back to the cook....  I made four rolls because that was how many nori sheets I had left - so I wound up with a little bit of rice and filling slices on hand (I could have made about one more, I think) - so I added these to my bits and pieces bowl, sprinkled it with a bit of soy sauce and wow, guess what? That's just about as good as the rolled up sushi!  I may try this again someday when I want my sushi rice fix and I'm not in the mood to go through the rolling process.

(Shared with Midnight Maniac Meatless MondayCraftomaniac Monday, Motivate Me Monday, Made By You Monday, Making Monday Marvelous, DIY Project Parade, Market Yourself Monday, Made With Love Monday, Monday Mania, Tackle It Tuesday, Whatever Goes Wednesday, Show and Tell Wednesday, Make It Yours Day, Getting Crafty on Hump Day, We Did It Wednesday, and What's Cooking Wednesday)

1 comment:

  1. Hi! I host a weekly blog hop -- It's a Keeper Thursdays. I'd love for you to stop by and link up!

    Christina @ It's a Keeper