Drum Roll Please..
Enjoy my New, Chris Kendall Original Recipe
"Better Than Nori"
Full recipe and Bonus sauce recipe below 🙂
For years I have read about both the potential "positive" and "negative' qualities / effects of seaweeds and aquatic plants in general. For a long while I have sat on the fence enjoying them in small amounts here and there really more for the flavour than anything, usually feeling gross if I over do it.
Recently I found out something that made me want to research more and ultimatly avoid seaweeds for the most part, Nori in particular..
Before the landslide of Seaweed lovers start bashing this post I fully acknowledge that Contamination free seaweeds may indeed have a host of positive nutritional qualities (such as iodine and Vitamin K) that can help detoxify the body from radiation and heavy metals. That said, the risks and realities around seaweed and specifically Nori that I will post below have lead me to chose to avoid reccomending and consuming it in general.
Out of a real need for vegan uncontaminated sushi papers I chose to create and now leak this Fully Raw Vegan "Better than Nori" Terrestrial Sushi sheet recipe straight from my Upcoming "Cravings Busters" Low Fat Transitional Raw Gourmete Series!
Thus "Better than Nori" Raw Vegan Sushi Wraps were born.Without going full on into this being a scientific reference filled paper (I would recommend you research and determine your position and validity of these points for yourself) I will share the main points that let me personally to Drop Nori from my menu.
1. Nori and seaweed in general act like filters in the ocean, as our oceans toxicity has gone up so has the heavy metal levels in seaweed over time. While its true contamination free nori can help bind heavy metals in our body, consuming nori that is already concentrated with heavy metals will likely only contribute to our toxic load rather than help remove it.
2. Since Fukushima the levels of radioactive plutonium and cesium have went up significantly in the ocean (from dumping these toxic wastes), Nori takes in and concentrates these radioactive isotopes. While there are no definitive comparitive studies of the levels of radiation and heavy metals in Nori Pre and Post Fukushima (I am yet aware of) there are indicators that even before Japan's Nuclear Disaster the levels were going up. IMHO it is prudent to stick to pre Fukushima seaweeds or avoid them all in general. Most of our seaweeds are harvested in Japan, China and Korea, specifically Nori. With the Nuclear Disaster being in that area in general and so much waste being dumped into the ocean I personaly am wary.
3. Nori and most seaweeds in general contain high levels of Sodium in the form of Sea Salt. While some consider seasalt to be very healthful I have come to believe and find out physically otherwise. To learn more check out this entire post I did on Sea Salt and all forms of "healthful" salt. "Sea Salt is it Good For You?"
4. Personally every time I have consumed more than a few sheets of nori seaweed I have felt gross the next day and often burped up the flavour. This even from high quality "raw vegan" nori that was made with simple combinations of veggies and avocado.
Last but certainty not least, in fact the one that lead me to Create "Better than Nori" Sushi Sheets
5. Nori is very very questionably Vegan.. Yes.. But how you may ask?
a) Well First, Nori is often grown using mollusk shells or similar shells that come from seafood processors that use the meat. Just from this some would say Nori is "For Sure" Not Vegan, while others would say that growing a plant from the remains of animal products/remains (shells) is hazy "vegan" ground. I mean I have eaten vegetables grown from a garden that uses manure but personally wouldn't wish to eat from a garden that uses fish bones and guts..
b) Second, Once fully grown on nets Nori is generally collected in such a way that tiny crustaceans and sea life (such as copepods and bryozoans; a copepod is a tiny shrimp) are inevitably also captured. During this collection process many die, during the cleaning process many die, in fact during the blending and drying process some are inevitably still mixed in the slurry creating a seaweed / sea life nori sheet.
So there you have it. I'd invite you to research more yourself and make up your own mind.
I do want to say..
I am not a expert on seaweed, the vegan police, nor am I saying that ALL Nori is processed in such a way. I have seen packages of very expensive raw nori sheets that say "vegan" right on the package but have not personally contacted the companies to find out the exact processing methods. This can be a hot topic with strong feelings and opinions on both sides, to me its simply one that everyone can make for themselves.
One aside, there are more than a few "vegan" products out there that are quite questionable, this isnt a "Good or Bad" issue IMHO rather a point to be taken into consideration among the others factors when making your own choice.
For me anyways I would rather eat my "Better Than Nori" sheets, they taste better and leave me feeling better too 🙂
Hope you Love Love the Recipe regardless 🙂
a cutting board,
This recipe makes 3 full sized Excalibur dehydrator Trays which can be cut into 12 – 18 sushi sheets that can yeild 60 – 90 pieces of sushi.
"Better Than Nori" Raw Vegan Sushi Sheets
Papaya, 3 cups chopped (aprox. 1 lb)
Zucchini, 3 cups chopped (aprox. 1 lb)
Tomato, 3 cups chopped (aprox. 1 lb)
Purslane, 3-5 big handfuls (aprox. .7 lb)
Red Chard, 10 big leaves or 2 handfuls (aprox. .4 lb)
Spinach, 2 big handfuls (aprox. .25 lb)
Arugula, 2 handfuls (aprox. .15 lb)
Green Onion, 10 peices (aprox .15 lb)
Red Okra, Ginger, Garlic, Horseradish (each to taste)
*** note: In the video we used Costa Rica and Chinese Spinach.. Substitute regular spinach and optional red Okra for the jelling properties. Red Cabbage can also be used for color.
Cube equal parts Zucchini, Papaya and Tomato, enough to fill the Vitamix till near overflowing (just over 64 ounces). Blend till smooth. Add in all the greens you can fit and Blend at slow speeds using the tamper. If you don't have a vitamix you may need to make this in batches and use celery to push the greens in. Blend to a medium smooth texture, you don't want to puree it completely but you also dont want it too chunky. Keep adding greens until they are all are mixed in well. Add in Optional Ingredients if desired and blend again.
Pour the mixture onto 3 teflex lined Excalibur trays (or your chosen dehydrator) tilting, rotating and spreading the mixture around the tray until it creates a even layer across the entire square sheet. You may want to watch the video for this part, it can take some practice tilting and shaping the sheet with a knife.
Place the sheets into the dehydrator at 115° for 10 – 12 hours. Flip and carefully peel off the teflex sheet if dry enough (tacky or fully dry) to do so. Place back on tray without teflex and dry a further 1-3 hours if necessary.
Once fully dry fold the sheet in half once, then again to make 4 big square sheets, or in half, then in thirds to make 6 equal rectangular pieces.
Cut along the fold lines with scissors to desired size. Pre cut each sheet into 4 – 5 individual sushi peices leaving a inch at the top of each cut, as shown.
If your not using promptly store in a air tight ziplock bag with parchment or wax paper between every few peices.
Your Fully Raw Vegan Better than Nori Sushi Sheets are now Done!!
To use these little guys up you have many options..
Make "rice" out of finely pulsed or grated Cauliflower, Jicima, Heart of Palm, Cabbage, Zucchini or sprouts..
Use that as the Base then layer that with your favorite sliced veggies such as
Red Peppers, Zucchini, Carrots, Cucumber, Tomatoes, Asparagus, Cabbage, Avocado..
The Sky is the Limit!!
It Really helps to use some Lemon juice on the edge of the wrap when rolling it to help the wrap stick…
Roll it up carefully, Practice makes Perfect, then cut along the Pre Cut Lines!There You Have it,
Fully Raw Vegan Seaweed Free Better Than Nori Sushi!!**** You can even get more gourmete with Marinated or Plain Mushrooms, Salt Free Sauerkraut (in my upcoming Cravings busters series), Low fat Nut Pate's and "cheezes", Ginger and more!
Get as Creative as you like!
Bonus Dipping Sauce Recipe!
Celery, 5 stalks (1/3 lb)
Mango, 1 medium (.4 lb)
Sun Dried Tomatoes, 1/4 cup
Lemon, 1 (.2 lb)
Black Sesame Seeds, 2 tbsp
Ginger, Garlic, Horseradish to taste.
Blend Celery untill pureed, Strain in a nut milk bag and transfer 1/2 back to blender. Squeeze in lemon, add dried tomatoes, mango and sesame seeds and blend till smooth. Add Celery juice till desired consistancy is reached, I prefer it thin but thick enough to stick to the sushi when it is dipped.
Watch out for my "Better than Soya Sauce" low fat Salt and Soy free recipe in my upcoming Cravings Busters Series!!
Hope you enjoy these Recipes, this Post, Video as well as all of the others below!!
If you haven't seen my Video "Is Sea Salt Good for You?" check it Here
If you haven't seen my Secret Patented Best Raw Pizza Crust Recipe video, Check it Here
For similar recipes grab my TRA Retreat Treats ebook by Donation Here
Get your own Vitamix and or Excalibur Dehydrator Here
Wishing you Much