Daughter Number Two and I have had a lot of fun cooking this last week. The other night we made sushi, fish-free of course.
Neither of us like avocados, so we used blanched asparagus instead. And very thinly cut carrots, cucumber and Japanese-style silken tofu (Mori-Nu brand, sold everywhere in aseptic boxes).
Served with already-prepared wasabi paste, these rolls of sushi (we made a lot more than are pictured) were gobbled up—literally. When eating sushi, it's best to put the whole thing in your mouth after dipping it into a soy sauce (or tamari) and wasabi solution. Then sit back and wait for the roller coaster ride that is wasabi.
Sushi is relatively easy to make, if you have all the proper ingredients and a sushi mat.
Cook sushi rice according to directions—I used 1 1/4 cup rice with 1 1/2 cups water, brought to a boil and then simmered like regular rice. This made enough for 4 or 5 nori sheets. (You'll want to use actual sushi rice, or at least a sticky short grain white rice. Don't use basmati, or brown rice.)
Mix the cooked rice with 2 teaspoons salt, 2 tablespoons rice vinegar and 1 tablespoon Japanese mirin —a sweet cooking wine. Add 2 teaspoons of sugar if you wish.
Place a nori sheet on the mat, and cover HALF the nori sheet with a 1/2 inch layer of rice, all the way to the edges. Place vegetables down the center of the rice, a few stalks of whatever you wish to include. (We sliced the fat asparagus stalks into thinner pieces.) Vegan cream cheese (we use Tofutti's Better than Cream Cheese) is a nice way to stick the vegetables together, and cilantro and spinach are also good additions.
Roll up the sushi by firmly grasping the nori and the mat, and lapping it over the vegetables. You'll have overlapping nori to seal to the edge. (Use a little water and rice vinegar to seal the edges.)
Repeat until you run out of rice or nori sheets. Wet a sharp knife with water and slice through the rolls, turning the rolls a quarter turn each time if necessary to ensure the rolls don't get unevenly squished.
Set the pieces of sushi on a plate, and in a small bowl, pour a tablespoon or two of soy sauce or tamari. Squeeze wasabi paste into the soy sauce and mix it around.
Dip the pieces into the mixture and prepare yourself for the horseradish kick: "Oh oh oh ohohohOHOHOHoh. Okay!"