Spicy Pumpkin Brown Rice Sushi Rolls
2 mini pumpkins
about 12 medium-sized shiitake mushrooms
1 cup (dry) short-grained brown rice
2 Tb + a dash of rice vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1 TB agave nectar
4 sheets toasted nori
bamboo mat for rolling
Bring 2 cups of water to boil, add the rice and simmer for 50 minutes. Cut the pumpkins in half and remove the pulp and seeds. Cut away the skin, and cut the flesh of the pumpkins into strips, about the width of your pinkie. Adjust for nonaverage pinkies. Steam the pumpkin for about ten minutes, until it is tender when pierced with a fork. Steam the mushrooms for about 5-7 minutes, until they are tender but not squishy. Slice the mushrooms into strips. Slice the scallions lengthwise into thin strips.
When the rice is finished and has cooled for a few minutes, mix together the sugar, agave and 2 TB of vinegar in a large, wide bowl -- glass is best. Add the rice, and toss. Prepare a bowl with a dash of vinegar and about twice as much water, to dampen your hands while rolling. Place a sheet of nori on your bamboo mat. (Rolling is possible but difficult without a mat.) Cover the lower half of the sheet with a thin layer of rice. In the middle of that layer of rice, place a row of pumpkin strips, a row of shiitake, and a row of scallions.
For presentation, try to allow the ingredients to protrude about half an inch (or more) from the edge of the nori. Roll the sushi, using the mat to keep the roll tight. Use a dab from your vinegar/water bowl to dampen the top of the nori sheet to close the roll. Slice the rolls into 6 or seven pieces each.
Place a small dab of shriracha on each piece. Enjoy! Yield: 4 rolls of sushi, about 24 pieces.