The following article was written by Keegan Baur.
Let’s face it: Eating sushi is fun! You order an exotic dish, and your waiter returns with a long, clean plate full of maki rolls in a pretty little row. Wielding your chop sticks, you get to dunk each colorful, bite-size piece of food into soy sauce before popping it into your mouth and experiencing that wasabi one-two punch. I mean, really, who doesn’t like sushi?
Well, … me. I never liked sushi. As an omnivore, I disliked it for a superficial reason: the cold, chewy texture of fish flesh didn’t exactly please my palate. As I became vegetarian and finally vegan, I learned more about the fishing industry and where “sushi” comes from. Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Eating Animals enlightened me as to the appalling amount of “bycatch” that results from commercial fishing and how many sea creatures are becoming endangered species as a result. His words horrified me: “Imagine being served a plate of sushi. But this plate also holds all of the animals that were killed for your serving of sushi. The plate might have to be five feet across.”
How could I reconcile my desire to partake in the “fun” sushi experience, given my aversion to raw meat, and leave my conscience intact? Easy answer: Choose vegan fare! Most sushi restaurants offer a variety of vegetable rolls, edamame, marinated tofu, miso soup, and salads. (No matter what you order, be sure to ask your server plenty of questions to verify that your selection doesn’t contain any animal byproducts.) Many restaurants are getting more creative with their vegan offerings, substituting seitan and tempeh for seafood.
Step outside your comfort zone and try your hand at rolling your own sushi creations at home! Think it will be too difficult? After watching this how-to video and reading these tips, you’ll be on a (sushi-making) roll in no time.
- Goin’ Back to Cali Roll
- Veggie Sushi
- Spicy Tempeh Roll
- Vegan Eggplant Tempura Roll
- Raw Zucchini “Sushi” Rolls
What’s your favorite vegan sushi dish?