Quinoa sushi rolls
Sushi rolls are not as difficult as they seem, once you get the hang of the rolling bit. It just takes a little practice. This quinoa version is a great vegan alternative, giving you all the protein without the fish. You can use different veggies that the ones suggested here – try pickling raw courgette, or adding batons of cucumber, or instead of mint you could use salad leaves. There are so many combinations possible so have fun mixing and matching.
You can also experiment with different dipping sauces. I've just suggested the simple tamari or soy sauce for dipping but you can mix in sesame oil, ginger, miso or wasabi to your dipping sauce for some variety.
Check out our quinoa sushi recipe video for a better idea of the rolling process
Makes 2 nori rolls. Serves 2 – 3 as a starter
1 large beet/ 2 small beets
Small bunch of mint
Quinoa - 1 cup cooked (half cup dry)
2 Nori sheets
1 cup rice vinegar
1 Tbsp Agave syrup
1 inch piece of ginger
Soy/tamari sauce for dipping
1. First cook the beets. To do this, keep the beets whole – only trim off the leaves, don't trim the top or tail or the red juice will bleed out. Steam or boil whole for 30 to 45 mins until tender. Leave to cool a bit but peel the skin while it's still warm – the skin comes off easier when warm. If cooked thoroughly the skin should come off easily with the tips of your fingers.
2. Pickle the beets: Cut the cooked beets into I cm strips. Peel the ginger and shave it into thin slices wth a potato peeler. Combine with the beets in a large bowl and mix in ½ cup rice vinegar. To pickle, you need to leave to marinade for a least 30 mins. The longer you leave it the stronger the flavour.
3. Prepare the quinoa: to cook the quinoa boil ½ cup dry quinoa in 1 cup of water. Cook for about 15-20 mins, uncovered, until all the water is absorbed. Remove from heat, transfer to a bowl and leave to cool. Once cooled, stir in 1 Tbsp agave syrup and 1 Tbsp rice vinegar.
4. Roll your sushi: fill a small dipping bowl with cold water. Lay out a sushi rolling matt and place one sheet of nori on top. The nori has a shiny side and a slightly more textured side. Lay it so the shiny side is facing down. Spoon half of your quinoa onto the nori, spreading evenly and leaving at least 1 inch gap at the bottom.
Place your veggies on top – lay mint leaves on the bottom, followed by slices of avocado and then the beet.
Wet the end of your nori with a wetted finger tip – this will seal the sheet once you've rolled it.
Now roll the nori, start with the end closest to you. Using the bamboo mat for help, bring the end up and tightly roll over the filling, making sure you press tightly as you go. The wetted end should meet the edge of the roll and stick the nori together.
With a sharp knife, cut into sushi into pieces. Arrange on a plate with a bowl of tamari or soy sauce for dipping.