Fig and hazelnut sushi with vegan cheese

Store bought vegan cheese has long been a rubbery disappointment. But when I tasted New Roots cheese I knew that vegan cheese had turned a corner. The quality of their cheeses is phenomenal. Here I used the Camembert style in a very simple dish. The flavour pairings may seem unusual but it works!

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For 6 pieces

1/2 cup black rice (note that the black rice I used did not hold together as well as I would have liked, so try to find a black glutinous rice. You can, of course, use non-black glutinous rice)

2 teaspoons ume shiso seasoning or rice vinegar

1 block of Camembert style vegan cheese or similar, cut into 12 thin strips

A little lemon juice

A pack of seaweed thins or nori sheets cut into rectangular smaller pieces

1 large fig or 2 small figs cut into 6 pieces

A few hazelnuts toasted and ground

Cook the black rice according to the packet instructions, cool completely.

Add the ume shiso seasoning or vinegar and mix well.

To assemble take one piece of seaweed, brush lemon juice on both of the smaller edges, add a strip of cheese to those edges and press down. The lemon juice should have made the seaweed wet enough for it to stick to the cheese. 

Fill the area between the strips of cheese with rice and then fold the nori and squeeze gently, squeezing will help the rice to stay in place.

Put the sushi onto your serving plate and repeat this with all the sushi.

Top with the figs and a scattering of toasted and ground hazelnuts. This should be served at room temperature and eaten immedieately.