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Soy Glazed Mushroom Sushi
Makes 36 California rolls, depending on size
FOR THE RICE
2 cups sushi rice
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
⅓ cup rice vinegar
FOR THE FILLING
250g Button or Portabellini mushrooms, sliced
neutral vegetable oil like canola or peanut
1 tbsp soy sauce
½ cucumber, peeled, deseeded and sliced into thin strips
2 carrots, peeled and sliced into thin strips
1 red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 avocado, peeled and sliced thinly lengthways
1 packet of nori (you need roughly 6 sheets)
wasabi, pickled ginger and soy sauce, to serve
1 For the rice: in a sieve, rinse the rice with cold running water until water runs clear. Pour rice into a pot with 2 cups/500ml cold water; let sit for 30 minutes. Bring rice to a boil over medium-high heat; once boiling, turn heat to low and cover. Cook for 10 minutes, remove from heat and let sit, covered, for 15 minutes.
2 In a small saucepan, dissolve the sugar and salt in the rice vinegar over a low flame. Spread the hot steamed rice onto a plastic tray or ceramic platter. (Do not use metal.) Pour vinegar mix evenly over rice and fold gently with a wooden spoon to mix. Cover rice with a damp towel.
3 For the filling: in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, cook the mushrooms in a drizzle of neutral oil. Once golden brown, add in the 1 tbsp soy sauce; cook the mushrooms in the soy sauce until the liquid has evaporated and they are well glazed. Season with black pepper. Transfer mushrooms to a board. Once cool, chop them roughly so they roll neatly when building the sushi rolls.
4 Prep the other vegetables.
5 Assemble the rolls: prepare a bamboo mat by wrapping it well in cling film. Place 1 sheet of nori onto your mat. Scoop a rough cup of sushi rice on top of the nori. Fill a small bowl with water to dip your fingers into – this will prevent them from getting sticky when handling the rice. Using your fingers, spread the rice in an even layer over the nori, leaving a 2cm border at the top to seal the roll.
6 So that the rice is on the outside, like a California roll, carefully flip over the rice/nori sheet, and gently press down to compress the rice.
7 Over the bottom third of the nori, layer the cucumber, carrot, bell pepper, avo and mushrooms. Use your fingers to hold the vegetables in place while you begin to roll the nori. Squeeze the bamboo mat around the roll as you go to ensure a tight sushi roll. Transfer the sushi roll to a cutting board and cut it into 6-8 even pieces.
8 Repeat with remaining rice and filling.
9 Serve the sushi with wasabi, pickled ginger and soy sauce.