Thursday, April 23, 2009

Superfood Sushi


Because my partner sticks to a pretty high protein diet because of his workouts, I’m always looking for new ways to make high protein meals varied and interesting. Pre-vegan days, that was simple, but it’s a little more challenging now. It also happens that I used to be sushi obsessed (well, I still am, but it was mostly for the raw sea animals before) and that I promised a quinoa recipe today, so I concocted a way of making high protein sushi! Okay… I didn’t do much, sushi IS high protein. But once you cut out the rice, its even higher, and hey, I get credit for figuring that out.

Yep, despite my Chinese heritage, I have come to find that rice is pretty overrated (blasphemy I know, just don’t tell my family…)! Plus it always makes me feel bloated afterwards, so to make sushi why not use quinoa? Aside from quinoa already being a complete protein, I always use veggies and some other form of protein to feel like I’m having a balanced and complete meal… I’ve done everything from seitan strips, to baked tofu, to tempeh and today to these Chicken-less Trader Joe’s strips that I don’t know what to do with because they kind of have a weird texture.
As I’m sure you all know, seaweed is great for vegans! Nori in particular is high in iodine and iron and pretty high in protein too. It’s also high in vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, magnesium and B2. And for those who care, it’s low fat. I think the benefits of the healthy fats of avocados have been talked about enough, as have the benefits of carrots (they make your eyes pretty), and cucumbers (they make your skin pretty). I like to keep it simple. Here goes:

Ingredients

Makes 1 roll
¼ C quinoa (I like Incan Red the best, but any kind works)
1 tablespoon of brown rice vinegar (or more to taste)
1 sheet of nori (there are plenty of organic seaweeds out there now!)
couple strips of avocado
couple strips of carrot
couple strips of cucumber
couple strips of some form of protein

1. Cook quinoa according to its packaging directions. When almost all the water has evaporated from it (or after but I think it infuses better this way), add the brown rice vinegar and stir.
2. While the quinoa is cooking, slice the veggies of your choice into strips.
3. The make sushi part! I don’t have a sushi mat, so I just use a cutting board: Lay the sheet of nori onto whatever surface you have. Place the quinoa along the TOP edge of the nori closest to you. Spread it out so it takes up about ¼ to 1/3 of the nori. Lay the strips of avocado, carrot, cucumber and protein choice as tightly fit together as you can along the quinoa (the tighter you make it the less likely the sushi will be crumble when you try to cut it).
4. Roll the nori starting from the edge closest to you, and roll as tighly as you can. Every time the nori has rolled around itself once, I tuck it in tightly and keep doing that at every turn. (if your roll doesn’t want to seal at the end, dampen the edge of the ends of it with water and try again)
5. Slice (or not and just eat it whole) the roll with a wet serrated knife. For me, it’s key to rewet my knife after every slice. But hey, if you mess up, you just get to eat the piece then and there!

3 comments:

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  3. hehe - i think rice is overrated too. my half-japanese boyfriend thinks i'm nuts though. if he could live on just one food it would be white rice.

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