This week we would like to share a couple of recipes for the coming summer. Both of them are not hard to make but the Sushi Rolls require a bit more time. Perfect for buffet style birthdays, celebrations though and sharing with friends and family that we have not had chance to be with in the past few months. The Summer Rolls with Tofu are refreshing, ideal for the warmer weather and once you have mastered the rolling, they are super easy to make. Both recipes are also easy to customise and add different flavour combinations. Similar to our Aubergine Toasted Sandwich recipe. These recipes, as well as being vegan are also gluten free, if that's your dietary preference.
The tofu is coated in a simple marinade, combined with fresh veggies and lots of fresh herbs such as mint and coriander. The flavours build as you develop the rolls, allow the tofu time to marinade and then there are lots of options of different dipping sauces you can use. For this recipe we just use a soy sauce, but our sweet chili sauce works great and if you wanted a more Indian spiced summer roll, then try our Tamarind and Date Chutney. These vegan summer rolls are a lovely way to start a meal, fresh, tasty, crunchy. As they are gluten free, they are an ideal picnic lunch option. For anyone that has read our previous recipes, you will realise we are slightly picnic obsessed! A long hike in the mountains is always made even better with snacks!
220g Firm Tofu (Pressed, and cut into strips)
1tbsp of olive oil
3tbsp of soy sauce
1tbsp agave syrup
½ tsp ground ginger
1tsp garlic powder
1 cup of sliced fresh cucumber
2 cups shredded red cabbage
1 red pepper, cut into strips
1 carrot, cut into strips or julienned
1 yellow pepper, cut into strips
Handful of fresh herbs such as mint
8 sheets of rice paper
Squeeze water out of tofu, then cut it into strips and then fry it up with some olive oil, gently turning the tofu until it’s lightly browned.
Add the soy sauce, agave syrup, ground ginger and garlic powder into a jug and whisk it up into a sauce for the tofu.
Pour it over the fried tofu and fry the tofu in the sauce until the tofu is sticky and browned.
Now you’re ready to make your summer rolls.
Fill a bowl with warm water. Ideally the bowl should be big enough to fit the rice paper but if it’s not, it will still work, you will just have to swirl it around.
Place your first rice paper sheet into the bowl of water. Submerge it for a couple of seconds until softened, it normally takes around 15seconds.
Place rice paper wrap onto a wooden board with the smooth side down.
Add a selection of the veggies to the middle of the rice paper wrap and top it with tofu. Then you just tuck in the sides and roll it up. The rice paper is very sticky so it doesn’t need to be held in place, it just seals itself.
The recipe makes 8 large spring rolls that you can then cut in half so that you have 16 in total.
We like it to serve it with soy sauce.
When living a plant-based lifestyle, people tend to worry about certain vitamins and nutrients. Vegan sushi rolls are a perfect source of iodine and iron.
Nori sheets are made from dried seaweed which has bundles of iodine. Iodine helps your thyroid gland to produce hormones to help control growth, energy production, reproduction and the repair of damaged cells in your body.
Nori sheets contain significant amounts of vitamin B12. The researchers were able to establish that Nori contains five types of biologically active vitamin B12 compounds including cyano-, hydroxo-, sulfito- adenosyl-and methylcobalamin coenzymes.
It is also rich in unsaturated fatty acids. Nori contains quite a large amount of essential trace elements including zinc, manganese, iron, selenium and copper. As we prefer to get our daily vitamins and minerals from natural sources we love Nori. If you are looking for other recipes that use this super seaweed, then check out out Vegan ‘Tuna’
1 pack of Nori Sheets
2 cups Sushi Rice (or medium grain white rice)
2 ¼ cups Water
1tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp salt
Splash of oil
2 cloves of garlic
Half red, yellow and green pepper
For Cashew Sauce:
1 cup of cashews, soaked
1 clove of garlic
2tbsp of nutritional yeast
½ tsp salt
1tbsp lemon juice
3tbsp fresh horseradish
½ cup of non-dairy milk.
Rinse your rice several times until the water runs clear before cooking. Once your rice is done cooking, transfer it to a bowl, cool it down and mix it with rice vinegar and salt. Carefully use a wooden spatula to gently mix your rice, using cutting motions. You want to gently mix it, not smash it or otherwise destroy the grains.
Now prepare your vegetables. Cut the carrots into strips and with minced garlic stir fry for a few minutes. Cut your peppers into long strips.
Now the veggies and rice are ready, prepare the cashew sauce. Pour your soaked cashews into the blender, together with salt, pepper, garlic, nutritional yeast, non-dairy milk, horseradish and blend it until smooth. You should aim for cream cheese consistency.
Then place the rice, veg bowls and Nori sheets in front of you and start rolling. Make sure you have a little bowl with some cold water in front of you for brushing the edges of Nori sheets.
Lay your Nori Sheet rough side down along the bottom edge on a bamboo mat or towel if you don’t have a mat. Using towel sushi rolls may look a bit messy but they will still taste amazing. Now using your wet fingers press your cooked and cooled rice into the Nori Sheet from edge to edge keeping the thickness about 1/2″ thick.
Leave a small strip along the top bare to help the roll seal. Once your rice is down, put some cashew sauce and lay your veggie strips along the length of the Nori sheet near the bottom and carefully roll upwards.
Go slow, and stop to firmly squeeze your roll from time to time to ensure everything sticks together. When you get to the end, wet down that last little strip of Nori sheet before you complete the roll and it should seal fine.
Once your roll is done, set it aside to rest while you make the remaining rolls.
Use a sharp knife cut into little rolls and serve it with soy sauce and some Wasabi sauce (Japanese horseradish sauce) if you got it handy.
Enjoy and if you make your own flavour combination of the sushi or the summer rolls, we would love to see your creations. Tag #relaxinglyactive on your pictures.
We are all looking forward to summer and sitting outside to dine with friends and guests. If you are looking for a place to combine plant based dinning with a day of yoga and hiking in the Austrian Alps, then send us a message.