First off I’m going to apologize for the horrible pictures. I actually made this meal at my mom’s last night and since I forgot my camera I ended up having to use one of her older ones.
I’ve mentioned before that my husband is a fish-hater but one of the few fish he actually does enjoy is tuna. And I’m not talking tuna in a can but the good sushi grade stuff. As you can imagine we don’t eat it very often (maybe twice a year) because of my concerns with over-fishing and the prohibitive price point.
But I decided to splurge a bit and went ahead and took the plunge (at $21.99/lb!).
Usually it’s just the two of us so I can get by with only half a pound but since I was going to be cooking this at my mom’s as a thank you I went ahead and bought a full pound to make four servings.
Let’s switch gears real quick – I actually refused to eat fish from the age of 5 or 6 until I was 22 when I started to get more into healthy eating and figured I needed to make myself eat it.
I still don’t like crustaceans (crab, shrimp, lobster) – completely random since that’s what everyone else (even those that don’t like fish) tends to like and eat.
So I faced a dilemma in my early 20’s because I was trying to eat more fish but hated the ‘fishy’ taste and had no idea how to cook it.
Sushi changed my mind and opened up a whole new world for me. I love, love, love sushi and it’s what helped me broaden my horizons as far as types of fish to consume. Maybe because it tends to be raw and thereby has to be super fresh but my first sushi experience was an eye-opener.
In fact, I’ve finally gotten my husband into eating sushi (yay) and between that and the meals I cook; I’m slowly working him around to not thinking that all fish is bad.
So this became a western sushi fusion spicy tuna roll in that I decided to put a burger-y twist on it…and it was glorious.
I used a Cooking Light recipe as my base and then pushed it to emphasize the burger-ness.
A warning though – it looks super fun this way, but when it comes down to eating I’d probably make it easier and cut each one in half; otherwise prepare yourself because it can get a bit messy with the rice and spicy mayo (although still very, very tasty).
Don't be scared! It looks like a lots of ingredient/time consuming recipe, but if you start with cooked rice I think the whole thing from start to finish took maybe 15 - 20 minutes (and that was while I was also making my side dish). The most time consuming part is doing the small dice for half the tuna which is done for textural reasons. If you're in a huge rush, just process all of the tuna and that'll easily shave off 5 minutes.
- 1 lb sushi grade tuna
- 1/3 cup green onions, small dice
- 1 ½ Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
- 1 ½ Tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
- ¾ tsp sugar
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 4 sheets of nori
- 2 cups cooked short grain brown rice
- 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp low fat mayo
- 1 Tbsp nonfat greek yogurt
- 2 Tbsp sambal oelek
- 1 – 2 tsp sriacha (depending on how spicy you want it)
- Combine vinegar, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Mix well and microwave for 30 – 45 seconds and mix again until sugar and salt have dissolved. Pour over hot cooked rice and toss continuously so rice absorbs the vinegar. Cool to room temperature while you make the burgers.
- Combine mayo through sriacha, taste and adjust. Note: it will seem super spicy but once you’ve put it on the burger and with the rice and nori the heat will be muted.
- Stack the four sheets of nori. Using kitchen scissors make 8 pieces of nori ‘buns’ – i.e. cut them into circles.
- Chop half the tuna into an extremely small and fine dice, place in bowl.
- Chop remaining half of tuna into large chunks and using a food processor, process until the tuna is finely minced (this helps the burgers stick together). Place in bowl with the finely diced tuna.
- Combine with remaining ingredients (green onions through garlic powder) and mix well. Form into four ½ in thick burgers.
- Grill each burger for 1 – 2 minutes or longer depending on how done you like yours (I’ll admit I prefer mine pretty rare but my husband likes his cooked through so his was completely done after 4 minutes per side).
- Divide rice evenly onto the nori ‘buns’ by patting it on one side of each piece. Top buns with a burger, spicy mayo, and then another rice/nori bun. Serve and enjoy!
Yum yum yum yum yum yum yum!
Loved it! My husband is not the biggest fan of nori, so I just put his burger on top of the rice. To round out the meal, I kept it pretty simple and served some stir-fried green beans on the side.
Side note – I’m still trying to find a green bean recipe I love that doesn’t involve tons of ham or bacon. This one was alright for last night’s dinner, but I’m still on the hunt for a healthy green bean dish. It was certainly edible and ok but didn’t knock my socks off.
What did knock my socks off was the burger. Crazy good. As I mentioned it was a bit hard to eat in true “burger” form but you could easily remedy that by cutting each one into 2 or 4 pieces to circumvent the issue a bit (and probably make it more sushi like).
Either way, I highly recommend this – give it a shot, you won’t be sorry!