Have you ever heard of Furikake? It’s a savory condiment used popularly in Japan, often sprinkled over cooked rice or onigiri to flavor and added texture.
But how does one use Furikake? And if you don’t have it handy, what could be a good substitute?
Here we explore the ins and outs of Furikake and the five best alternatives that make for a fantastic result.
So what are the secrets behind Japanese cooking? Let’s find out.
What is Furikake?
Furikake is a revolutionary seasoning with hundreds of years of history behind it.
It consists predominantly of seaweed, sesame seeds, and dried fish, which come together to create an umami flavor and a wonderfully textured experience.
This ancient ingredient has been made popular in modern times for its salty-spicy burstiness, making it easily adaptable to many dishes.
From onigiri to spaghetti, furikake can be used by sprinkling it over your food or as part of the base ingredients; however you choose to use it, you’re sure to get a unique taste sensation out of this mysterious blend of spices.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Furikake
If you’re in a pinch and don’t have any furikake on hand, we’ve got you covered.
Here are the five best substitutes for furikake that will still give your dishes that delicious umami flavor:
1 – Homemade Furikake Seasoning
With the abundance of store-bought furikake seasoning found in supermarkets, one might find themselves perplexed as to why homemade furikake seasoning is an option.
However, if you’ve never tried it before, you might be surprised by how much better homemade furikake can be.
Homemade furikake seasoning has a unique blend of savory and salty flavors that provides a delectable texture to dishes like rice and vegetables.
It is easy to make with ingredients such as sesame seed, bonito flakes, seaweed, sugar, and salt.
With various combinations of these favorites, you can tailor the taste to your liking.
Homemade furikake seasoning will leave an unforgettable flavor in your meals and have everyone clamoring for more.
2 – Nori Flakes
Have you ever encountered a bowl of rice topped with little green flakes? The mystery ingredient is called nori flakes, an umami-packed condiment made from seaweed.
Rich in iron and vitamin C, these salty and crunchy sheets are commonly served in sushi restaurants to give your meal a burst of flavor.
Although mostly used as an edible garnish on the side of ramen or nabedon, nori flakes can also substitute for furikake.
It has a delightful texture – slightly chewy yet instantly melts in your mouth – and a delicious taste, perfect for sprinkling over a bowl straight out of a steamer.
3 – Schichimi Togarashi
Schichimi Togarashi, also known as ‘Japanese Seven Spice,’ is a unique pantry staple that packs quite the pungent punch.
A type of furikake, it consists of seven main ingredients: ground red chili pepper, roasted orange peel, black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, dried seaweed, poppy seeds, and hemp seeds.
As for its flavor profile, the schizimu togarashi intensifies any dish with its spicy-savory combo.
The mouthfeel is characterized by an alluring mixture of crunch and heat coming from each of these components.
But if you’re without it in your home kitchen and need to substitute it with something else, then just mix together chili powder, dried minced garlic, and ginger, as they will mirror its distinct profile nicely.
4 – Salt + Sesame Seeds
Salt and sesame seeds provide a surprisingly diverse range of flavors and textures.
Used in dishes ranging from Chinese stir-fries to supremely elegant Italian pasta, this classic combination has captivated people for centuries.
Salt and sesame seeds have a light but flavorful punch to them that can make a boring dish truly special.
They also add a wonderfully crunchy texture that contrasts nicely with the softer elements of a meal.
If you’re looking for an interesting way to give your food an extra kick, why not try sprinkling some salt and sesame seeds on top? A great alternative to furikake, this unique mix will give your plate an extra layer of complexity.
5 – Crumbled Nori (seaweed), Sesame Seeds
Have you ever come across crumbled Nori (seaweed) and sesame seeds mixed together and wondered what the flavor would be like? This food combination, often referred to as furikake, adds savory, salty, and slightly sweet elements to enhance dishes.
Furikake is popular for sprinkling on top of meals such as rice or vegetables but can also be used as a seasoning for soups or stews.
The taste of crumbled Nori and sesame seeds blend together perfectly, while the crunchy texture creates a pleasing contrast.
If you are unable to get a hold of furikake, substitute it with crushed seaweeds and roasted sesame seeds – it will do just the job.
In conclusion, furikake seasoning is a unique and delicious way to give your meals an extra bit of flavor.
Whether you’re looking for something savory, salty, or a little bit of both, furikake is a perfect choice.
However, if you don’t have access to it, there are plenty of alternatives that can do the trick.
Nori flakes, Shichimi togarashi, salt and sesame seeds, and crushed seaweed with sesame seeds are all great alternatives to furikake that won’t disappoint.
So if you’re in need of something special for your next dish, look no further than these five substitutes.