1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup water
1 Tbs vinegar
1 tsp salt
1 carrot, peeled
1-2 spring onions
200g raw, smoked or cooked salmon (or 185g can of tuna), or cooked chicken, pork or beef
1 tsp finely grated ginger
1 Tbs sesame seeds
1 Tbs soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp wasabi paste (optional, or add more for a stronger hit)
4 nori sheets
Vegetarian filling option:
1 Tbs sesame oil
2 Tbs soy sauce
1-2 tsp finely grated ginger
300g firm or medium tofu
Add the quinoa, vinegar, water and salt to a pot. Bring to the boil, cover with a tight-fitting lid and reduce heat to low.
Cook for about 15 minutes, then turn off the heat and allow to stand, still covered for 5 minutes.
Transfer quinoa to a bowl and allow to cool slightly, while preparing the sushi filling.
Grate or cut the carrot into matchsticks, thinly slice the spring onion and thinly slice the avocado.
Mix all the sushi dressing ingredients together. Add half to the quinoa and toss to coat, reserving the rest for drizzling over the finished sushi.
To construct the sushi rolls, lay the nori sheets on a flat surface (use a bamboo rolling mat for an authentic touch), shiny side down. Spread the cooled quinoa 5mm thick evenly over the nori, leaving 2cm of nori exposed at the far end of the sheet.
Arrange the filling (meat and vegetables) horizontally across the centre of the quinoa.
Dampen the exposed end of nori with a few finger drops of water. Lift the front of the nori sheet (the side opposite to the exposed nori) and begin to roll tightly over the filling. Continue to roll all the way up and the apply pressure to join the edge of exposed nori to the rest of the roll.
Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (up to 3 days), before slicing into pieces with a nice sharp knife. Drizzle the reserved sushi dressing on top and serve straight away.
The day before, mix the sesame oil, soy sauce and ginger together. Place the tofu in a suitable small container, pour over the marinade, cover and leave in the fridge overnight. Slice and use in place of fish or meat.
For an even lower-carb option, you can make cauliflower rice (P168) instead of quinoa, but the quinoa does give a lovely nutty taste.
Photo Credits: Images copyright © Todd Eyre Photography, 2019’