I found some beautiful king oyster mushrooms in Chinatown last week, with no real plan on how to use them. I didnt want to buy a ton of ingredients to make a dish, so I used what I already had in my cabinets and refrigerator, and made these spicy and nicely textured sushi rolls with them. The trick here with getting the mushrooms to develop a similar texture to a scallop is an hour-long soak in a little warm water to soften them up a bit. A quick roll in some panko and cornstarch gives these rolls a nice little crunch and goes well with the spicy sriracha-Vegenaise sauce.

If you scan below for the ingredients that I used to make the glaze you see on the plate above, you wont find them€”I was overgenerous with adding in a thickener, and ended up with an aromatic but weirdly textured sauce that was almost inedible. However, it turned out that this dish doesnt really require all of that anyway, as a quick dunk in a little soy sauce balances everything out perfectly here.

3/4 cup sushi rice, soaked for 30 minutes in cold water
1 1/2 cups water
1 TB rice vinegar
1 TB sugar
1/2 TB salt
plenty of oil for frying
4 straight, medium-sized king oyster mushroom stems, soaked in warm water for about an hour
1 1/2 tsp Ener-G, whisked with 5 TB cold water
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
4 toasted nori sheets
sesame seeds
4 TB Vegenaise mixed with 1 tsp to 1 TB sriracha, to taste
soy sauce

optional, to serve
vegan caviar (I used prepared IKEA brand, but you can also make your own)
pea shoots or sprouts

After the rice has soaked for 30 minutes, rinse thoroughly under fresh cold water and place into a rice cooker with the 1 1/2 cups of water. Once the rice is ready, place the rice vinegar, sugar and salt into a large glass bowl and place in the microwave for 10-15 seconds. Transfer the cooked rice to the glass bowl and stir well. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a small pot over medium-high heat. After 7 minutes, throw a pinch of cornstarch into it. If it sizzles immediately, you are ready to fry. Place the mushroom stems into the Ener-G/water mixture, then roll them in the panko/cornstarch mixture until well coated. Tap off any excess. Fry each piece separately for about 2 minutes and place on paper towels to drain and cool.

Roll your sushi, spooning some of the sriracha-Vegenaise dressing in a straight line next to the mushroom. Serve with soy sauce and garnish with vegan caviar and pea shoots or sprouts, if desired.