Jul 2, 2011

recipe: vegetarian sushi

OK well I'm not doing a full sushi recipe... I just wanted an excuse to post photos of my very first homemade sushi!! It's very exciting.

I only started liking sushi recently, when I went to a restaurant in Qu├ębec called Metropolitain (or Eddie Sushi Bar). There, I tried the cucumber rolls and the avocado rolls and I fell in LOVE with the avocado ones. There was a brief period after that where I would crave the avocado rolls. Anyway, I've been back to that place again once or twice, and I've eaten at a couple of all-you-can-eat sushi restaurants. Some are more miss than hit, even with the avocado rolls :( Not to mention expensive.

I remember my friend and old roommate Erin making sushi at home once, and it didn't look TOO hard, so I wanted to give it a try. Kyle and I picked up the necessary materials on our last trip to International Food Market: a rolling mat, nori (the seaweed sheets), sushi rice, wasabi paste, and pickled ginger. Aaaand we've been putting it off since then. It's intimidating!

I put it on our "weekly meals" list for the week, and we tried it out today, since we knew we'd be home for a while. It took about 3 hours from start to finish, although a lot of that was just waiting. We followed the instructions for cooking the rice and rolling the sushi that were printed on the nori package. Here are the approximate list of steps:
  1. Rinse rice and then soak for 30 minutes
  2. Prepare fillings
  3. Cook rice, then let sit for 10 minutes.
  4. Mix rice with sushi vinegar (rice vinegar, sugar, and salt) and cool a bit while stirring.
  5. Roll sushi!
  6. Cool for about 1 hour (the cooling is optional but it made it really easy to slice nice pieces)
  7. Slice sushi & serve!

Here were our fillings: everything was long thin matchstick type pieces except for the carrot, which was long strips that we obtained with a carrot peeler.
  • Avocado (of course)
  • Cucumber (one of Kyle's favourites)
  • Vegetarian California roll (avocado, cucumber, and carrot)
  • Stir-fried tempura tofu (recipe below)
  • Deluxe: stir-fried tofu, avocado, cucumber, and carrot

I enjoyed all of them. They tasted as good as any restaurant, and Kyle even said the tofu tasted better than the tofu sushi we've gotten from restaurants. Yay us. I must say that the tofu was my least favourite, only because it had too much "savoury" taste and not enough "freshness" that would come from a veggie. I preferred the deluxe better because it had the extra veggie-ness.

This makes me want to have a sushi party :D

Recipe: Stir-fried tempura tofu (for sushi)
It's not much of "recipe" since I didn't measure amounts, but it was something like...
  • tofu, cut into matchsticks
  • soy sauce
  • hoisin sauce
  • tempura sauce
  • hot chili oil
  • water
Mix together and let sit for 1-2 hours.
Stir fry tofu in sesame, chili, & corn oil with a spoonful of the marinade sauce.
Let cool; set aside.

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