As you might have surmised from some previous posts, I’m totally sold on cauliflower rice. Whether you’re doing the low-carb thing, living paleo, avoiding grains for any reason, or just plain packing more vegetables into your diet at every given opportunity, cauliflower rice is a great option that can be used just about anywhere rice can. I realized just the other day, though, that one common rice context place I had never tried using it was in SUSHI – one of my favorite indulgences. Yes, sometimes I can splurge and have the real deal, but it’s also nice to have an alternative that allows you to hit that flavor profile without actually going off-program (whatever program that might be for you).
I was really pleased with how my informal, very basic maki rolls came out! I added a little rice vinegar and honey to be a little closer to the flavor of sushi rice. You can use any filling you like, of course; here I just used a little avocado, carrot and cucumber for a veggie roll, but by all means, add some fresh salmon or ahi if you’ve got it!
GRAIN-FREE SUSHI ROLLS
1 white onion, finely diced
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 large head cauliflower, grated or pulsed in food processor until fine
1-2 tablespoons rice vinegar (or another mild vinegar)
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon salt
3 sheets toasted nori
2-3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
For filling: avocado, carrots, cucumber (or even fresh salmon or ahi tuna), whatever you like in your favorite sushi
For topping and accompaniment: wasabi, ginger, and tamari or coconut aminos
Heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add onions and saute for a good 6-8 minutes, until softened, sweating and starting to brown a touch. Stir in grated cauliflower and saute together for a few minutes. Add the rice vinegar and honey and cook, stirring frequently, for 5-10 minutes, until all liquid is gone and cauliflower is soft. Add salt and adjust to taste. Remove cauliflower to a mixing bowl or baking dish and chill in the fridge for about an hour, just until cool. Prep whatever veggies or filling you have while the rice cools. Tidy cooks could take this time to do the dishes too.
When you’re ready to assemble your rolls, prep your work area with the sheets of nori, a sushi rolling mat (really handy and available at Asian markets or at places like Whole Foods), the sesame seeds, and so forth. Now, far be it from me to reinvent the already very refined wheel when it comes to sushi. I simply followed good instructions – you can find many sources. Just a few suggestions are Sushi Day, The Kitchn, and The Pioneer Woman (though the last link shows a the process for a California roll, so the rice is on the outside; I haven’t tested this with cauliflower rice, but the action shots are still great). Whatever your source, the cauliflower rice behaves basically the same way as regular rice, if a tiny bit moister.
Roll up and enjoy with your preferred sushi condiments!
— posted by Anne