Saturday, August 11, 2012

Veggie Quinoa Sushi

I always found the idea of making homemade sushi so daunting, but after seeing a few other people I know trying it I figured I should look into it... And WOW was I surprised by how easy it is! Especially if you are vegan - or just making a vegan roll for fun - because you don't have to worry about the freshness of fish and what-not. This roll is super versatile and simple. I bought raw nori sheets from Whole Foods (make sure to buy raw to ensure you are getting all he great benefits of eating nori!), and have used both brown rice and quinoa, but love the quinoa the best. Quinoa, a gluten free grain, trumps other grains in nutrition (besides sprouted ones, those are the best). In just a quarter cup you get 5 grams of protein, 3 grams fiber, and 10% of your daily need of iron. I have also heard great things about purple rice, and hope to try that one next!

As for the filling, use any of your favorite veggies. Although I find avocado and cucumber to be the best, I'm sure some carrots or sprouts would be great too! This recipe makes one roll, which should serve one person, so double or triple as needed.

1 raw nori sheet
1/3 cup dry quinoa
2/3 cup filtered water
1 avocado, sliced
1/4 - 1/3 of a cucumber, pealed and sliced into sticks
Liquid aminos (or low sodium soy sauce) for dipping

Place quinoa and water in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook for 10-15 minutes (or until all the water is absorbed). Once done, take off burner and let sit with lid still on for another five minutes. Fluff with a fork, and transfer to a bowl to cool.

On a cutting board, lay your raw nori sheet. Cover with quinoa, leaving about a half inch gap between the quinoa and the edge of the nori sheet closest and furthest from you. Stack your sliced avocado and cucumbers in the center (horizontally), or whichever veggies you choose to use. Taking the bottom of the nori sheet closest to you, roll tightly over the veggies, to form a super tight rolled log. I didn't use a rolling mat and it turned out great, but if you have a rolling mat use that instead for this step. I then just lay my hand over the roll and squeeze slightly to make sure everything is binding together in there (not sure if I'm really helping anything at all or just making myself feel better). Then I let it sit for a few minutes, (again, probably to make myself feel better, as if some magical binding power is taking place) and slice with a serrated knife into 8 pieces. Serve alongside a little dish of liquid amines (or low sodium soy sauce) for dipping. Now, enjoy yummy, healthy vegan sushi in the comfort of your own home, yay!

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