But what is this so-called “sushi bake”? It was first created by a celebrity nail artist, Mimi Qui Reyes from the Philippines and went viral during the lockdown throughout social media. It’s basically a deconstructed version of a sushi roll in a casserole form! It’s super quick and fun to make and doesn’t require any fancy equipment or complicated skills—just an eager and hungry tummy is needed! It's also a great potluck dish to bring over to share with family and friends.
Vegan “Crabmeat” Sushi Bake
- 3 cups cooked rice
- 3 tbsp rice vinegar
- ¼ cup vegan mayo
- ¼ cup vegan cream cheese (soften)
- ½ cup seaweed flakes
- ½ block of firm tofu (shredded)
- A handful of small cucumber (diced)
- A handful of 1–2 stalks of spring onion (chopped)
- Sriracha sauce (to drizzle)
- nori/ seaweed sheets
- 1 avocado (sliced)
1. Before starting, leave your vegan cream cheese to soften at room temperature (this helps to mix easily later on).
2. In a mixing bowl, incorporate your choice of cooked rice and rice vinegar until evenly combined well (I used mixed grain rice so you can use any type of rice you’d like—short grain white rice works well).
2. Then on a square tray, transfer your rice and press down on the tray as your base.
3. In the same mixing bowl, shred your firm tofu using a food grater (this will serve as your imitation “crabmeat”) – I love how the texture can resemble it so much!
4. Then add dollops of your vegan mayo and cream cheese, the first ¼ cup of seaweed flakes (save the other half from ½ cup for later) and mix gently without breaking the texture of the shredded tofu or it will just end up being mushy (if you don’t have readily bought seaweed flakes, you can simply blitz some seaweed sheets in a speed blender/ processor to make your own). This will help with the “sea” taste we look for in seafood.
5. Pour all that goodness over your rice base, spread and level evenly to the edges.
6. Bake at 230°c for 10–15 minutes until your cream cheese mixture topping is golden and gooey.
7. Finally, top with your avocado slices, diced cucumber, sprinkle the other ¼ cup of seaweed flakes and drizzle over some sriracha sauce (if you love texture, shower over some toasted sesame seeds to even add more flavor too!)
8. Savor mini bites or a spoonful of this amazing sushi bake with some nori sheets and a dip of soy sauce. Enjoy a new fun way to eat sushi!
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Photo: Bel Faustino