How are you today? Let’s cut straight to the chase with our recipe of the week because it NEEDS to be shared right.this.second. It was lunch on the weekend and as I was going through the photos, I got more and more excited by the second to tell you about it. Here goes.
In addition to my current avocado obsession, I’ve also been totally into seaweed. Although it can sometimes be difficult to find some types, nori seems to be one of the easiest due to the popularity of sushi making and Japanese restaurants.
Normally when you think about wraps, you’d probably think about grain-based ones like whole wheat, spelt, brown rice, or even some other gluten-free wraps (most of which fall apart in seconds, in my experience). But not these! Rather than using rice as one of the fillings as you’d normally find in sushi, this wrap is 100% grain-free, both in its outer layer and inner fillings. Inspired by some veggie sushi I ate on a trip to Montreal a while back, I made a chunky sunflower seed-based spread in my food processor and used that as a first layer in these Big Fat Nori Wraps.
Over the past couple of days, I’ve been growing some sprouts in my sprouter jar, and it just so happened that they were perfectly crunchy at the time I was making my wraps. If you haven’t got time to sprout however, you can totally just buy your favourite blend from the grocery store. Alfalfa, Deli Blend and Clover are three I often buy from Whole Foods if I need sprouts and don’t have a couple of days to grow them myself.
One of my pet peeves about nori sheets is that they’re not as big as tortillas, and therefore, it’s difficult to make a big roll with them. In the case of this recipe, you can either stick 2 nori sheets together using warm water as your ‘glue’ along the seam, or just make two separate wraps, which is what I’ve done in the instructions.
While the recipe below may look long, these wraps really aren’t that difficult to make and they taste flippin’ awesome. Nothing makes me happier than a meal full of colour, and that’s exactly what’s going on here. You could totally play with the veggie fillings and use whatever you have kicking around in your veggie crisper, or use hemp seeds in place of the sunflower seeds if you want an extra dose of healthy omega-3 fats.
Oh, and before I forget, 3 pro tips:
- Moisten the edge of the nori when you finish rolling it up to help seal the roll and makes for much easier cutting in half.
- Nori has a shiny side and a rough side. You want the shiny side to be face-down on your sushi mat and the rough side to be facing up. It won’t stick very well if you do it the other way around.
- Because the vegetables inside hold a lot of moisture, I wouldn’t advise storing these in the fridge overnight. That shouldn’t be a problem tough, because once you taste them, I’m pretty sure you’ll want to eat every last bite up right away!
Big Fat Nori Wraps
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 0 mins
Ingredients (1 serving)
- 2 sheets nori seaweed
- a very small bowl of warm water
For the fillings:
- 1/3 cup baby spinach leaves
- 1 small carrot, shredded
- 1/4 English cucumber, cut to the width of the nori sheet, then into thin long pieces
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced purple cabbage
- 4 shredded or very thinly sliced red radishes
- 1/4 cup sprouts (alfalfa, broccoli, sunflower, lentil etc – homegrown or store bought)
- 1/4 avocado, thinly sliced
- chopped cilantro, optional
For the cilantro sunflower spread (you will have some leftover):
- 3/4 cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds
- 1/4 cup loosely packed cilantro
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tsp low sodium tamari
In a food processor, combine all ingredients for the sunflower spread forms. It won’t be completely smooth, but that’s ok!
Prepare all fillings as directed above.
Lay the first nori sheets out on a sushi rolling mat. Start with a thin layer of sunflower spread on the edge of the nori nearest you, spanning the nori sheet from left to right. (Note: You’re looking for a rectangular shape, the width of the nori, covering about 1″ of the sheet, and about 1/2cm tall.)
Arrange some of the spinach leaves over the sunflower spread, then add a few long strips of cucumber, purple cabbage, carrot, radish, sprouts, avocado and cilantro, in that order.
Grabbing the end of the sushi mat and nori sheet nearest you, pick them up and start to roll away, keeping the fillings inside.
When you get to the point where the nori and mat are over the fillings, give the bottom part of the mat a little tug to tighten the roll. (Resist the temptation to tug on the seaweed – this will make it tear.)
Continue rolling the nori sheet away from you, letting the mat come loose on top.
Once you reach the edge, apply some warm water to the edge of the nori sheet with your fingers. Roll over it and place the wrap on a plate, seam side down, for a minute or two which will help the wrap to seal.
Slice the wrap in half and trim or fold under the extra bit of nori at the ends. Repeat with the remaining nori sheet and fillings.
Enjoy with a mixture of low-sodium tamari for dipping.
So tell me…
- What’s the best take-to-work lunch you’ve made lately?