For the tofu:
You’re going to need:
- 600g soft tofu
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil (organic, virgin)
- 1 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
- 1 heaped tablespoon of spicy Korean hot pepper paste (make sure to read the ingredients carefully because very often anchovies and other non-vegan ingredients are added so you might need to shop around to find a vegan version)
- 2 tablespoons tamari
- Generous pinch of spice bag seasoning (I found mine in an Asian supermarket and the ingredients are red pepper, chilli, salt, star anise, fennel, ginger, cardamom, Chinese cassia, cloves, garlic, Szechuan peppercorn, sesame seeds and black pepper.)
How to make:
- Add the coconut oil to a large pan at a low heat.
- Add the mustard, Korean pepper paste and Tamari into a wide flat bowl and mix well. Add 1 or 2 pinches of the spice bag seasoning and mix well until a paste-like consistency is formed.
- Drain and rinse your tofu.
- Chop into small bars. I like to slice my tofu in half horizontally and then slice it into 4 pieces lengthways then slice each of those strips in half lengthways again so I have two rows of 8 bars. Then I slice the tofu in half lengthways which gives me 32 bars of tofu.
- While the oil is starting to melt on the pan, take your strips of tofu and place them in the bowl gently marinating them until they are all coated evenly.
- Allow the tofu to sit in the mixture for at least 10 minutes before adding to the pan.
- Fry on a medium heat until evenly cooked and you can see a golden colour on the tofu.
For the sushi:
You’re going to need:
- Sushi rice (I used 1 cup and cooked it in 1 1/2 cups water with 1 teaspoon salt (pink Himalayan sea salt) as directed by the instructions on my rice packet)
- Rice vinegar
- Nori (or other seaweed paper)
- Veggies of your choice (I find that harder/crunchy vegetables that can be cut into thin strips work best)
- Pickled radish strips (optional)
- Sushi mat (this isn’t necessary but it makes rolling the sushi easier)
- Sharp knife
How to make:
- Cook the rice following the directions on the packet (I usually start marinating the tofu while I’m waiting for the rice to cook).
- While the tofu is marinating, wash and chop the vegetables.
- Carefully cut your cucumber, pepper, purple cabbage, red onion and carrots into long, thin strips. I find that for vegetables like carrots it’s easier to run a vegetable peeler along the length of the carrot rather than trying to chop it thinly.
- Once all your vegetables are prepped, check on the rice. Season the rice with rice vinegar to taste while it’s cooling down. (This is when I add my tofu to the pan and fry until fully cooked).
- When everything has been cooked and cooled it’s time to assemble your sushi rolls.
- Lay your nori shiny-side down on the sushi mat. (If you don’t have a sushi mat, don’t worry, I didn’t use one when I first started making sushi and it still worked out just fine^^ you just need to be more careful not to rip the seaweed, also your sushi probably won’t be as tight as when you use a mat but it’s still perfectly edible and delicious!)
- Add rice to the nori. I like to use less rice and have more fillings but it’s entirely up to you and your own personal preference. Spread the rice so it covers about 2/3 or 3/4 of the nori.
- Layer your fillings in whatever order you prefer.
- Use your fingers to tuck the fillings in towards you while you use the mat to wrap your sushi. Start at the side closest to you and carefully roll the sushi away from you while gently squeezing and pressing down on the sushi mat to ensure your roll will be nice and round and tight. You might need to add a little bit of water to the seaweed paper to help seal off the roll – my rice was still a little bit warm so the condensation from the rice sealed the paper by itself.
- You should have one long sushi roll now. Leave it to sit for a few minutes while you make your next sushi roll.
- Using a slightly wet, sharp knife, slice your sushi rolls into smaller easy-to-eat slices. Make sure you dampen the knife after each slice so it’s easier to cut.
- Serve with tamari or wasabi or anything else you’d prefer.