Nori Rolls with Cauliflower ‘Rice’, Smoked Carrot & Crispy Tempeh.
Chop the raw cauliflower roughly into florets. In a food processor, pulse the florets into rice-sized pieces.
Gently sauté the cauliflower ‘rice’ on medium heat, for about 7 minutes – stirring frequently for even cooking. Season with salt & cracked pepper. Set aside to cool.
Slice the block of defrosted tempeh into thin strips. Marinate them in Braggs (low sodium soy sauce), maple syrup, grated ginger, garlic, miso paste, and 2-3 scant drops of sesame oil. Lay the tempeh on a baking sheet, and cook for 20-min at 400 F – turning the strips over after 15-min, for even crisping.
While the tempeh is baking, prep the smoked carrot. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the carrots into ‘ribbons’. In a bowl, toss the carrots with salt, the juice of half a lemon, and a couple drops of hickory liquid smoke. Set aside to marinate and tenderize for a few minutes.
Now that all the components are ready, it’s time to roll! Tip: Get a small bowl of water – and dip your finger in to seal the nori rolls closed.
On a sheet of nori, add a few spoonfuls of the ‘rice’, a few pieces of smoked carrot, cucumber, baked tempeh, and fresh coriander. Roll up the nori, squeezing the filling together firmly, to ensure all the ingredients hold tightly. Dampen your finger with water, to seal the nori rolls closed.
Slice the rolls in half and serve with dipping sauce.
This satisfying ‘complete-meal’ recipe was designed to offer a balance of fiber-rich complex carbohydrates, sustainable plant-based protein, heart-healthy fats, and deliciousness. Cauliflower is a low-glycemic (less sugars/starch), more nutritious alternative to rice. Turning it into ‘rice’ is a tasty way to incorporate more veggies into your diet! Enjoy this bite in portable roll form, or as a bowl – with ‘rice’ at the base, tempeh strips on one side, cucumber/carrot ribbon salad on the other, some cut up nori strips for texture – and the sauce as a dressing!
- 2 carrots, scrubbed and sliced into ribbons using a veggie peeler
- 1 english cucumber, sliced into ribbons using a regular veggie peeler
- 1 bunch of coriander, washed and roughly chopped
- 1 pack of defrosted tempeh (organic/GMO-free), sliced into thin strips
- 1 cauliflower, roughly chopped into florets
- 1 lemon, juice
- Apple cider vinegar *optional
- 4-5 drops of hickory liquid smoke
- 7 Nori sheets (6-7)
Tempeh Marinade and Dipping Sauce:
- 1/2 cup Braggs aminos (aka low sodium soy sauce)
- 1/4 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 3 tbsp tahini
- 1 tbsp white miso (organic/GMO-free)
- 2 tbsp minced fresh ginger
- 1/4 cup sesame seeds – toasted in dry skillet
- Water to loosen until desired consistency
- Pre-heat the oven to 400 – in preperation for the tempeh. Make the marinade/sauce by blending the tahini, rice vinegar, maple syrup, Braggs, miso, ginger, and 3-4 tbsp of water – to loosen. Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust the seasonings to your personal preference. Marinate the tempeh for 10-15 min. Pour the residual marinade into a bowl, to serve as the dipping sauce – and stir in the toasted same seeds.
- In a food processor, pulse the cauliflower florets into a rice-like texture. Cook the ‘rice’ in a skillet, over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Do this in two stages, so as not to overcrowd the pan – allowing the cauliflower to sauté, not steam. Set aside.
- Bake the marinated tempeh strips on a lined cookie sheet for 20 min, flipping them over after 15 minutes – for even crisping.
- While the tempeh is baking, prep the smoked carrot. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the carrots into a bowl – add salt, juice from half a lemon, a splash of apple cider vinegar (optional), and a couple drops of hickory liquid smoke.
- Peel the English cucumber into ribbons, using the veggie peeler. Set aside.
- Now we are ready to roll! On a sheet of nori, add some of the ‘rice’, a few strips of smoked carrot, cucumber, baked tempeh, and fresh coriander. Roll the nori firmly but gently – ensuring the filling holds together tightly. Using your finger, seal the nori closed with some water. Enjoy with the dipping sauce!
- Tempeh, composed of fermented soybeans – is the most protein-packed whole soy food. The fermentation process provides a delicious nutty flavor, and probiotic benefits – supporting digestion! Also rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. The quality and quantity of soy we consume is important to consider. Purchase organic/GMO-free tempeh/tofu/edamame, and aim to enjoy 3-4 servings of whole soy foods a week – balancing it with other healthy sources of protein like legumes (lentils, beans, peas), and pseudo-grains (quinoa, farro, buckwheat groats, freekeh). Tempeh can be found in the frozen section of health food stores, and the organic section of many supermarkets. Many people are intimidated by cooking tempeh, but I encourage you to TRY this preperation, and please let me know how it goes!
- Sesame seeds and sesame butter aka tahini are packed with B vitamins, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, vitamins, plus plenty of protein, and healthy monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and omega fats.
- The nori sheets I prefer are produced by Eden brand.
Find a similar tempeh recipe aka my Gado Gado rolls here – utilizing cabbage instead of nori.
Try this ‘smoked carrot’ recipe – with silken tofu ‘cream-cheese’ and dill on seedy crackers.
Watch the behind the scenes preparation of this recipe in this video!