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Sushi, Basic Vegetarian

by Pierre S. Aoukar, MD
Posted: March 15

Servings: 2-3


6 sheets nori (toasted seaweed)
1 recipe Sushi or Brown Sushi
Rice Sushi Picture 1 English cucumber
1 large carrot
1 avocado
toasted unhulled sesame seeds
soy sauce
wasabi powder or paste (Japanese horseradish)
hot sauce (Sarachi)
pickled ginger


sushi or bamboo mat (for rolling sushi)
bowl cold water


1. Before you do anything, start cooking the rice.

2. Vegetables must be cut just right if you want sushi to look nice once you are done. The goal is to cut long, thin, even strips of vegetables that are either the width or half the width of a sheet of nori. This holds true for carrots and cucumber, but not for avocado. For avocado, you want to cut rectangular pieces, so you use as much of it as possible. I cut it along itís natural shape and overlap the slices when I roll the sushi. That way, I donít waste anything.

3. Once your vegetables are prepped and your sushi rice is prepared according to the recipe, you are ready to roll. The goal is to roll tight, even rolls of sushi. This will produce the best results once you cut the rolls. Sushi Picture Begin by laying out a sheet of nori on the bamboo mat, shiny side facing down. With your hands dipped in cold water, take a clump of the sushi rice and begin to spread it onto the nori. The best way is to take little clumps at a time and use your fingertips to spread. I like to have a thin of layer of rice, about Ĺ cm, so I can fit more vegetables in the roll. Dip your fingers into the water if they get too sticky (be sure to keep any water away from the nori because it will ruin it). You want to spread the rice not to all the edges. The nori sheet is cut into sections and you will find that the two sections at the edge nearest to and farthest from you are considerably smaller than the other sections. You want to stay within these sections so you can seal your roll. Be sure to spread the rice all the way to the side edges, however.

4. You will be placing the filling on the side closest to you. First, sprinkle sesame seeds lightly over the rice. On the edge of the rice, of the side closest to you, lay down your vegetables. I like to use a filling that is at least twice as thick and high as the thickness of rice on the sheet. Using the bamboo mat, grab the edge closest to you (the part without rice on it) and fold it over the filling to cover the filling completely. Using your fingers, tightly grip the sushi mat over the roll, pulling towards yourself. Do this for the entire width of the roll. Turn the mat another 90˚ away from you and grip the roll with your fingertips again, tucking the roll as tight as you can and pulling toward yourself. Do this a few more times and your roll is done. Be sure to hold the roll down for a little bit longer on the last roll so your roll seals well. You should have a tight, compact roll that is square in appearance.

5. Slice each roll into 8-12 pieces using a really sharp chefís knife or a serrated knife. For this recipe you can make 2 rolls each of cucumber, carrot and avocado. You can make any combination you like.

6. For dipping, use soy sauce with a tiny bit of wasabi paste mixed in. I like to add a bit of Sarachi hot sauce instead. Wasabi clears out my sinuses far too well. Pickled ginger goes well with every bite.

Basic Vegetarian Sushi, The Recipes of Dr. Aoukar


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