I love sushi! I always have and I probably always will. When I decided to go vegan literally one of the first things that ran through my head was “can I ever have sushi again?” I quickly found out that yes, of course, I would! I had never thought of it before, but there is such a thing as vegan sushi!
Even though our minds might immediately jump to the thought of raw fish when we think of it, sushi can be considered a vegan food – that is, until fish is added. Wikipedia’s definition of sushi proves it:
Sushi is a Japanese food consisting of cooked vinegared rice combined with other ingredients, seafood, vegetables and sometimes tropical fruits. Ingredients and forms of sushi presentation vary widely, but the ingredient which all sushi have in common is rice. Sushi is often prepared with raw seafood, but some common varieties of sushi use cooked ingredients or are vegetarian.
Last year for my birthday, my husband took me to an all-vegan sushi restaurant in downtown LA called Shojin. Everything we had there was breathtaking and hard to believe it was completely plant-based! I’ve been dreaming of their dynamite roll ever since. I also just discovered a link for their secret recipes!
So there you have it – vegan sushi is a thing and it is oh so beautiful!
Which is why I was excited when SushiQuik contacted me to see if I would be interested in reviewing their product. I’ve tried making vegan sushi before, with varying degrees of success, and this promised to help me make even better sushi. What more could you ask for?
When I received the SushiQuik in the mail, I was a little confused how to put it all together. And that was probably because I didn’t read their very-thorough instruction sheet! For some reason I always like to try and figure things out by myself and if I can’t figure it out, then I go read the instructions. Nevertheless, this kit did come with an instruction sheet, complete with pictures and actual words (not like IKEA where you have to interpret their diagrams without any description at all!).
The SushiQuik comes with:
– A Training Frame to help you properly measure the rice.
– A non-stick paddle to help you spread the rice.
– Two end caps which can also be used as sauce soy holders to dip your sushi roll
– SushiQuik Sushi Roll Cutter
After I got acquainted with the product, I started thinking of a recipe.
There are a two things you need in order to make sushi, regardless of the type of roll you’re making:
- white rice that is round, white, and short-grained (the guy at the asian market told me to get Botan, though I’ve recently looked it up and there seems to be better options out there
- sushi nori (seaweed sheets to wrap the sushi in)
Two other ingredients that are optional, but considered necessary to many sushi lovers (like me!):
- soy sauce
- wasabi paste (I picked up a tube at the asian market – I know it’s probably not legit wasabi but it gets the job done!)
I decided that I wanted to make a Teriyaki Mushroom roll and I would need ginger and garlic for the sauce. I also wanted to add tofu for extra protein and some veggies just because I like them and was trying to make this a complete dinner.
I began by pressing the tofu to remove excess water and setting it aside to marinate as I prepped the rest of the sushi ingredients. I got the rice cooking and prepared the Teriyaki Mushrooms (scroll down for the recipe). Then I prepped the sushi vegetables by julienning the carrots and cucumber, slicing the avocado and lightly steaming the asparagus. I then, pan-fried the tofu for about 3-4 minutes on each side until it was golden and sliced into strips to roll into the sushi.
After the rice had cooked, I added the rice vinegar, sugar and salt to give it the proper texture and flavor for sushi.
Once all of the ingredients were prepped, I started on the adventure and most-feared part of sushi-making, actually getting everything to form into perfect, awesome-looking bit-size pieces! Using the SushiQuik, I was able to create some solid rolls! The first few I made had way too much rice, so I focused on spreading the rice onto the nori sheets a little bit thinner. My favorite part of using the SushiQuik was cutting the roll – it held the roll perfectly in place and allowed me to cut each piece into the same size, without the roll falling apart!
Vegan Sushi Tips
Making vegan sushi is a process that you want to set some time aside for, but I have a feeling that the more often you do it, the easier and quicker it gets. That of course is the point of a product like SushiQuik, which aims to help with the final step of sushi-making. Rolling a sushi roll can be intimidating, but it does seem like it’s just something that comes with practice and patience.
- Allow yourself time – definitely wait to make vegan sushi until you have a little bit of time to dedicate to it and you’re not in a hurry to get dinner made.
- Learn – read about making the perfect the sushi rice and how to cut sushi vegetables
- Have fun - Don’t get too caught up in making perfect sushi – focus on the flavors and the fun of trying something new!
SushiQuick Discount Code
SushiQuick was kind enough to offer a discount code for my readers!
Click here and enter code EASYSUSHI to get $5 Off your order!
Valid through March 31.
- 1 package firm organic tofu
- 2 cups mushrooms (I used crimini but shitake would work great)
- 4 stalks asparagus
- 1 avocado
- 1 carrot
- 1 cucumber
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 Tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 tsp fresh grated garlic
- 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
- 2 Tbsp. agave syrup or brown sugar
- 1 tsp corn starch or arrowroot powder
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups short-grain sushi rice
- 2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- Drain the water from the tofu package.
- If youhave a tofu press, use that to press out the excess water. Otherwise, wrap the tofu in a few paper towels and then in a clean dishcloth.
- Place something heavy on top of the tofu, such as a heavy pot or a stack of cookbooks.
- After 10 minutes, remove the tofu from the press or towels and slice into long strips about a half inch thick.
- Place in a ziploc bag with 1/4 cup soy sauce and let it marinate in the fridge while you get everything else going.
- Rinse the rise using a mesh strainer.
- Add the rice and water to a pot and bring the water to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low and cook for 8-10 minutes, or until water has cooked off, being careful not to burn the bottom.
- Combine the rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Stir this mixture into the rice as soon as it's done cooking.
- Let it cool to room temperature before using to make sushi.
- Slice the mushrooms thin, lengthwise.
- Add to a small saucepan with the sesame oil over medium heat. Cook until they are softened.
- Add the garlic and ginger and cooke for 1 more minute. Do not let it burn!
- Mix the soy sauce, water, agave syrup and corn starch together.
- Add the mixture to the pan and stir well, until the sauce has thickened. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- Use a julienne peeler to create long, thin strips of the carrots and cucumber
- Slice any other vegetables you are using into long, thin strips.
- Spread the rice into a very thin layer on the nori, leaving a quarter inch of space around the edges.
- Place the sushi filling on top of the rice, lengthwise. About 2 strips of tofu, 1/4 cup teriyaki mushroom mixture and a few strips of each vegetable.
- Dab your finger in some water and wet the far end of the nori.
- Roll the sushi using the white mat(if you're using SushiQuik) or bamboo mat.
- Remove the roll from the mat and place on a cutting board. Using the cutting guide, or just eyeing it, slice into equal size pieces. Try to use a sharp knife to avoid tearing.
- Serve with wasabi, pickled ginger and soy sauce for dipping.
- Add or remove any items you want to customize!