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Seaweed rolls & Sweet Wasabi Pesto Dressing

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seaweed hand rollsSeaweed or nori (sea vegetable) rolls are an easy and beautiful delicacy you can serve for a light main meal or as appetizer maki bites.  Arrange the maki on a nice plate or tray and you have a centerpiece for any cocktail party or get together.  Best part is that these rolls are as delicious as they are colorful and they take very little time to make.

spinach bowlI made these seaweed rolls with spinach, scallions, quinoa, cucumbers and strawberries and of course the wasabi pesto dressing to rein it all in.  Seriously, the combination of strawberries and wasabi pesto works pleasantly into a maple sweet and basil bitter taste with the right amount of horseradish whiff.   Phew. That was a tongue twister of ingredients and adjectives but no other way to say it.  For substitutions you can replace quinoa for brown rice and you can pretty much throw in any veggies or fruits that you like into the roll.

wasabi powderI have used wasabi powder rather than already made wasabi paste.  I find the intensity and flavor are much more pronounced in the powder version.  To make the wasabi take a couple of powder teaspoons and mix with enough hot water to make a paste. Then let sit for five minutes or so to bring out the flavor.

hand roll in the makingMake sure quinoa is cold before spreading because otherwise seaweed will get too soft and unmanageable.

seaweed roll 1

seaweed roll 2Delicate and spectacular.


Seaweed rolls & Sweet Wasabi Pesto Dressing
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
Makes two seaweed rolls or cut into several maki pieces as small bites. Each roll can be cut into 6-8 pieces.
For sweet wasabi pesto dressing
  • 2 teaspoons wasabi powder
  • Hot water
  • 4 tablespoons pesto
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
For seaweed roll
  • 2 large sheets Nori seaweed
  • ⅓ cup cooked quinoa chilled or at room temperature (divided)
  • 1 cup spinach (divided)
  • ⅓ cucumber sliced into long pieces (divided)
  • 4 scallion stalks cut in half and sliced into long pieces (divided)
  • 2 small strawberries sliced (divided)
For sweet wasabi pesto dressing
  1. In small bowl combine wasabi powder with enough water to make a creamy paste
  2. Let sit 5 minutes
  3. Mix in pesto and maple syrup and set aside
For seaweed roll
  1. On countertop or cutting board, lay two sheets of seaweed side by side and follow instructions below dividing all ingredients between them
  2. With moist wet fingers add quinoa to seaweed sheet and gently press with your fingers covering most of the surface
  3. Spread wasabi pesto dressing on top of quinoa
  4. Add spinach and continue to layer with cucumber, scallions and strawberries
  5. Gently roll seaweed sheet making sure that you seal ends with wet fingers and roll is tight (do not overfill)
  6. With a wet knife cut roll into two or more pieces
  7. Serve with a side of kimchi or pickled ginger(optional)










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2 Responses

  1. I love the idea of adding strawberries into this, how delicious! I only tried quinoa nori rolls for the first time in a veggie restaurant a few months ago and they were amazing, will have to try making them myself soon. Did the quinoa stay in well enough to roll them up or was it quite tricky?

    • Tabatha says:

      Hi Natalie and thanks for writing! Agreed that the strawberries add a delicious twist to this seaweed roll. The quinoa worked fine but if you are worried about the consistency than just cook it with more water and you will get a stickier quinoa. For every cup of uncooked quinoa you would usually add 2 cups of water so perhaps add 2 1/2 cups instead and stir right away after cooking rather than letting the grain settle in the pot. Hope this helps!

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