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Vegetarian Sushi Nori and variations

4 sheets nori, toasted
1 T umeboshi plum paste
1 T rice vinegar
1 clove garlic, smashed
1 slice ginger, smashed or grated
1 1/2 T soy sauce
2 carrots
2 eggs
4 scallions
4 c cooked rice
1 T oil

Prepare ingredients: Heat oil in small skillet (about 20 cm diameter)
on med. high. Slice carrots *lengthwise* into pieces about 0.5 cm
diameter. Saute carrots, garlic, and ginger until carrots are just
slightly cooked, about 2 minutes. Remove from pan. Stir together
eggs and soy sauce. Add to pan, and cook until eggs are set. Do
not disturb eggs while cooking, except to turn once. You should
end up with an "omelette", fairly dry. When eggs are set and
moderately firm, remove from pan. Cut into strips about 0.5 cm
wide. Mix vinegar and plum paste into cooked, cooled rice.

Assemble nori rolls: Lay out a sheet of nori with the "rough" side
toward you. Spread 1/4 of the rice across nori, leaving about 2
cm space on the far end and 1 cm space on the close end. Go all
the way to the sides. Make an indentation in the rice about 2 cm
from the close end. Lay 1/4 of the other ingredients in the
indentation: carrots, eggs, and 1 scallion. Now roll up, beginning
by folding over the 1 cm flap of nori closest to you, then rolling
up from the folded edge. You want the roll to be nice and firm,
so try to keep it tight as you go. To seal, run a slightly wet
finger over the edge where the seam is. Place seam-side down.
Slice crosswise into pieces 4-8 cm long (your preference). The
orange carrot, yellow egg, and green scallion make a lovely center
against the white (or brown) rice. Serve with soy and pickled

Notes: sticky rice works the best, but any kind will do. Use brown
rice for the best nutritional value.

Variations: Once you have the basic method down, vary the center
ingredients as you wish. This is my favorite combination, but
other ideas are tofu strips, other types of cooked vegetables,
fresh spices (strips of fresh dill, for example), etc.


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