California Cucumber Sushi Rolls
For childhood cancer awareness month, we teamed up with the Fierce Food Academy over at MaxLove Project to help families thrive against cancer through culinary medicine. Their classes, led by Chef Andrew Johnson, teach parents about incorporating nutrient dense foods into their family wellness plan.
This "fierce food" is perfect for a lunchbox! Younger kids can help scoop out the center of the cucumbers. It has a wonderful amount of vitamin A, C, and K thanks to all of the delicious veggies. The added fiber from the cauliflower rice helps to make this dish nutrient-dense and a high-quality carbohydrate choice!
2 cucumbers, medium to large
11⁄2 cup cauliflower rice, cooked and drained 1⁄4 cup cream cheese
1 avocado, sliced
1 red bell pepper, julienned
2 carrots, julienned
1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
1 tsp soy sauce, ponzu, or coconut aminos
Spicy Mayo Dipping Sauce:
4 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp Sriracha sauce
1⁄2 lemon, juiced
1. In a large mixing bowl add cooked and thoroughly drained cauliflower rice, cream cheese, soy sauce, and sesame seeds, then mix until fully incorporated and refrigerate until needed.
2. Cut each cucumber in half (there should be one end left on each half) and scoop out the seedy center and flesh with a spoon, melon baller, or long thin knife (save the seedy center flesh for other recipes like tzatziki). This will result in creating a long, hollow tube with ~1⁄4-inch-thick walls of flesh remaining all the way around.
3. Spoon in a small amount of cauliflower rice mixture, then press it to one side of the tube using a butter knife. On top of the cauliflower mixture add a couple of slices of avocado, a couple of slices of pepper, and a couple of slices of carrot. Then add more cauliflower rice to fill the cucumber tube. Press in the rice mixture until it has filled all of the space inside the tube and is packed full, suspending the other veggies in the middle.
4. With a sharp knife, slice off the end of the cucumber to expose the veggies inside, with a small spoon or clean finger gently press the mixture towards the opposite end to ensure the tube is packed full with no air gaps. You can add a bit more filling if you notice a void. Then cut the cucumber into 1⁄2-inch-thick disks.
5. For the dipping sauce, evenly combine mayonnaise, Sriracha, and lemon juice. You can also consider adding protein such as salmon, shrimp, chicken, or tofu.
* For a more traditional sushi experience serve with pickled ginger, soy sauce, wasabi, and chopsticks.
Recipe credit: Chef Andrew Johnson at Kitchen Curative for MaxLove Project
Photo credit: Anne Watson