Veggie Quinoa Maki

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Nothing gets my mouth watering like a piece of sushi. I love all kinds of sushi, fish or vegetarian. There is something that gets me with the salty, chewy seaweed wrapped around the sweet and sour rice or quinoa that engulfs a variety of crunchy and creamy vegetables on the inside. Yummmmmmmm!

So even though I went out with a friend the night before to a sushi dinner, I decided to make this vegetarian sushi for lunch yesterday. This was my second time attempting to make a sushi roll. The first time I made a sushi roll was in a sushi making class I found on Groupon. I bought the class for a fun date activity to do with my boyfriend. In that class, we had a lot of fun! The instructor was witty and made tons of jokes about sushi that kept me laughing the entire time. My boyfriend and I both made about three rolls each that day and we were pretty successful at it. The best part of the class was that we got to eat all of it! I was so full by the end, but totally worth it!

Before taking this sushi class, I was super intimidated by making my own sushi. I didn’t know how to make my roll stick together or keep the ingredients from falling out. But after taking the class, I felt a lot more confident that I could do it. And I feel even more confident after I made the sushi roll yesterday out of memory and it still turned out great! Not only is it a fun activity that can impress your loved ones or friends, but you also save a TON of money making sushi at home. This is especially great for my boyfriend and I because the most expensive date we’ve ever had was going out for my birthday to a sushi restaurant in NYC that was SO delicious but definitely a huge dent to a college kid’s budget. Well, now we don’t have to spend that kind of money to eat delicious sushi. For anyone who is super interested in learning about the art of sushi, I recommend watching online youtube video lessons and investing in a sushi rolling mat. They cost about $5 at local stores or even cheaper on amazon or ebay and are the most essential part to your sushi rolling experience.

This veggie sushi roll is a vegan version of your typical sushi roll. It consists of quinoa instead of rice. I am leaning towards making most of my sushi with quinoa now because I read an article about how eating regular sushi with regular white rice is pretty unhealthy because you end up consuming A LOT of white rice. Therefore, when eating sushi out or making it yourself, it is best to make sushi with quinoa or brown rice. So here, I used quinoa and filled it with some cabbage, carrots, cucumber, and avocado. It was delicious! Here is the recipe:

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RECIPE:

Makes one sushi roll

Ingredients:

  • Sushi Rolling Bamboo Mat
  • 1 Sushi Nori Seaweed Sheet
  • 3/4 cup cooked Quinoa
  • 1 Tablespoon Tahini
  • 2-3 long thin slices of Carrots
  • 2-3 slices of Avocado
  • 2-3 long thin slices of Cucumber
  • Chopped Red Cabbage
  • Soy Sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Amino Acid for dipping (optional)
  • Wasabi to taste (optional)

Directions:

  • Take your sushi rolling mat and cover it in some plastic wrap. This is to help the roll from sticking to the mat and makes it easier to roll.
  • Take your sheet of sushi nori and place the shiny side face down on the bamboo mat. This will keep the shiny side as the outside of your roll.
  • Place 3/4 cup chilled, cooked quinoa in a bowl
  • Mix in 1 Tablespoon of Tahini into the cooked quinoa
  • Once the quinoa is thoroughly mixed, cup the quinoa in your hand and make a ball
  • Place the ball on the face up side of the seaweed in the middle of the sheet
  • Use your fingers to spread the quinoa outwards towards the edges of the sheet
  • Make sure that the quinoa touches three of the edges of the sheet except for the top, you want to leave about an inch of space at the top for your rolling. Otherwise, the quinoa should fill the rest of the seaweed sheet besides a horizontal inch-thick strip at the top.
  • Place your inner ingredients: the long thin slices of carrots, avocado, cucumber, and red cabbage in the middle of the sheet.
  • Pick up the sushi mat with your fingers and roll the mat/seaweed sheet over the ingredients. Once you do this press down hard with your fingers and tuck the mat, tightly. My teacher in the class called this “cat paws”. It literally looks like you’re making “cat paws” on the mat, around the sushi roll.
  • Pick up your mat and roll the sushi roll once more forward. Press down super hard again so it keeps the sushi roll compact. This step is to secure your sushi roll.
  • Pick up your mat and take the sushi roll out.
  • Use water to dab along the edges to seal the seaweed roll
  • Use a knife to cut into sushi sized pieces.
  • Serve with soy sauce, wasabi, or spicy mayo and enjoy 🙂

Watch this video for more clarification on how to roll a sushi roll correctly. It seems complicated to explain but it is in fact really simple once you try it! Try it out and enjoy some delicious sushi at home 🙂

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