Gluten Free Japanese Recipes: Avocado Onigiri Rice Ball Recipes

July 2nd, 2009 yum Posted in 4th of July, Dinner Party, Eggs, Japanese, Lunch, Party Food, Rice, Vegetarian 16 Comments »

As you may know, the DH and I are expecting a “Baby Yum” in mid July and so have been doing all sorts of things to prepare for her, including attending childbirth classes. I had always imagined that these classes would be cuddly events involving yoga mats and back massages and spouses, so I was a little disappointed with the rather clinical, hospital-themed lectures we ended up attending. I also found myself more than a little hungry at the first one as it took place directly after the DH got home from work during our typical dinner hour. We sped over to a nearby PF Chang’s for a late dinner, but after that I wanted to bring our own dinner. (This was encouraged by the class leader/nurse.) The next class, I brought tasty spring rolls. The week after, though, I was inspired to make another international portable snack, Onigiri, or Japanese rice balls.
First I prepped the ingredients and set them out on a plate, and then I made a bunch of different types in small triangular molds:
Vegetarian Sesame Spinach Onigiri (a Book of Yum favorite)
Vegetarian fresh basil and sweet egg onigiri (a Japanese omelette made with 1 small beaten egg, 2 tsp. sugar and salt fried and then minced) with both ingredients mixed into the rice.
Cream cheese, avocado, and cucumber onigiri
Peanut Sauce Onigiri (recipe below)

The latter recipe was inspired by an earlier recipe I’d never gotten around to blog, where I used very yummy gluten-free miso mayo with avocado and pine nuts for a fusion nigiri. This time I didn’t have any on hand but I did have some of the new gluten-free San-J peanut sauce in my pantry, so I used that. It was delicious and ended up being one of my favorite rolls, next to the sesame spinach onigiri. The rolls traveled beautifully and made a very tasty and hearty dinner during our class. They would be perfect for a picnic lunch or a Fourth of July celebration as well! If you haven’t tried making vegetarian onigiri, I highly recommend it as a portable and delicious, easily gluten-free meal.

This time I used onigiri rice triangle molds similar to these above. Besides Amazon, you can find onigiri molds at specialty online shops, Japanese markets, and Japanese dollar stores (hyaku en Shoppu) like Daiso.

Product Review of San-J Gluten-Free Peanut Sauce
Thin Japanese egg omelette recipe for an alternative to a nori wrap
Festive Coconut Sticky-Rice Onigiri Recipe

Fusion Avocado Basil Vegetarian Onigiri Recipe
2 rice cooker scoops of White Sushi Rice
Nori Seaweed sheets, either square cut in half or onigiri size
1/2 fresh avocado, chopped in large, thick chunks
Miso Mayo or your favorite GF mayonnaise with a touch of salt or GF soy sauce added (if soy is ok for you)
Handful of Pine Nuts, toasted or not to taste
Julienned fresh basil OR fresh shiso leaf (I prefer basil)
kosher salt flakes
black sesame seeds
Rinse your (uncooked) sushi rice until the water runs clean with no cloudiness. Drain and cook your sushi rice in your rice cooker according to machine’s directions OR, if you don’t have a rice cooker, prepare on the stove according to rice directions. When cooked, fluff rice and let cool slightly.

Prepare your ingredients and set up an onigiri station with a rice bowl, saran wrap and ingredients. Line rice bowl with saran wrap. Sprinkle saran wrap with kosher salt flakes. Place layer of sushi rice in the bowl on top of the saran wrap, press a few pine nuts into the center of the bowl and rice, top with a little fresh basil and then add your piece of avocado to the center on top of basil and pine nuts. top with a little miso mayo, a little more julienned fresh basil and then cover with a layer of rice. Sprinkle rice on top with kosher salt. Wrap saran around the whole rice ball and remove from bowl. Compress with hands until you have a nice, tight triangle. Gently remove from saran wrap and wrap in nori seaweed so nori is open towards the top of the triangle. Sprinkle with black sesame seeds if desired.

Make more until you run out of rice. Enjoy this easy lunchbox treat. :)

*Will need to be refrigerated, especially if you use an egg based mayonnaise.
Gluten Free Vegan Peanut Avocado Onigiri Recipe
San-J peanut sauce or homemade peanut sauce
1/2 cubed avocado
1/4 sliced, cubed peeled cucumber
pine nuts
Julienned fresh basil OR fresh shiso leaf (I prefer basil)

black sesame seeds

Rinse your (uncooked) sushi rice until the water runs clean with no cloudiness. Drain and cook your sushi rice in your rice cooker according to machine’s directions OR, if you don’t have a rice cooker, prepare on the stove according to rice directions. When cooked, fluff rice and let cool slightly.

Prepare your ingredients and set up an onigiri station with a small triangular onigiri mold, saran wrap and ingredients. Line onigiri mold with a small piece of saran wrap. Place layer of sushi rice in the mold on top of the saran wrap and drizzle a small amount of peanut sauce on the rice and add avocado, cucumber, and a few pine nuts in the center of the rice mold. Top with a little fresh basil or shiso. Then cover with a layer of rice and press into a nice triangular onigiri. Wrap saran around the whole rice ball and remove from mold. Compress with hands and gently remove from saran wrap and sprinkle with black sesame seeds.

San-J peanut sauce is very liquid, so it will seep into the top of the onigiri. Homemade peanut sauce can be thicker so will not necessarily leak.
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Adopt-a-gluten-free-Blogger October Roundup: Gluten-Free Lunchbox Recipes and Ideas

October 21st, 2008 yum Posted in Adopt a Gluten Free Blogger, Bento, Blog Event, Gluten Free Blogs, Lunch 8 Comments »

For this month’s edition of Adopt-a-gluten-free Blogger, I chose a special lunchbox theme. I hoped to collect a selection of delicious recipes from gluten-free bloggers that would be suitable for a gluten-free packed lunch. We didn’t have as many participants as I had hoped, but I hope this post can be a jumping off point for thinking about creative gluten-free lunches. In the interest of this, I am starting a list in this post of gluten-free recipes that are lunchbox friendly. I hope you will contribute ideas and even URL’s of appropriate recipes in the comments.

Cheryl of Gluten-Free Goodness brought along a gorgeous Summer Tomato salad for our tiffin that she found at Kalyn’s Kitchen.

Rachel of the Crispy Cook contributed Susan of the Fat-Free Vegan Kitchen’s delicious and romantic chickpea crackers for our lunchtime tiffin! She said they were surprisingly easy to make. All I can say is they look delicious to me, and I’d love to try them too. :)

We were all hungry for dessert, and I was pleased to have Emily of Gluten Free Expedition share delicious-looking Mini Donut Hole Muffins from Carrie of Ginger Lemon Girl.

Meanwhile, I (Sea) couldn’t resist bringing along Carob Brownies from Asparagus Thin’s blog. They fit perfectly into a little metal tupperware and I am certain this is one travel-safe carob brownie!

I think you can agree that this would make one delicious gluten-free lunchbox, albeit one a little bit heavy on the sweets.

What do you like to pack in a gluten-free lunchbox?

For a gluten-free vegetarian lunchbox, I like foods that don’t require silverware. If they are tasty WITHOUT being heated up, that is a definite plus, although I know many of us have access to microwaves at our school or workplace.

Here are some of my favorite ideas for lunches:

*A gluten-free sandwich on TOASTED gluten-free bread (such as Bette Hagman’s, the Gluten Free Pantry Favorite Sandwich Bread, or Bob’s Red Mill GF Homemade Wonderful Bread-NOT hearty)
Tasty fillings: egg salad, veggie [hummus with avocado, sprouts and fresh basil etc.], peanut butter or other nut butter and jelly

*Japanese Inspired Rice Ball with Fillings such as..sesame spinach or Avocado.

*Thai or Vietnam Inspired Spring/Summer Rolls Instructions for summer roll and peanut sauce recipe here. Substitute sweet chili sauce if nut allergies are a concern. Wrap summer roll individually in plastic wrap so they don’t stick to each other, and make sure sauce container seals OR put layer of sauce in the roll in between layers of rice paper

Here are YOUR ideas for a gluten-free lunch….

Gaile suggested a mouth-watering Mediterranean lunchbox. Assemble a Mezze platter of gf prepared dolmas, GF crackers, hummus, a few hearts of palm, a couple of artichoke hearts, bites of tomato, cucumber slices, and a little side of quinoa tabouli. For vegans, marinated tofu cubes are nice. Those who do dairy can add a little feta. Pescatarians and omnivores can add smoked salmon. [Sea: olives and baba ganoush eggplant dip are other tasty options!]

Rachel usually brings leftovers into work as she has access to a microwave, but she also enjoys a tasty gluten-free cheese sandwich, stuffed celery and deviled eggs for lunch.

Kim’s 12 year old son Jon eats non-veg sandwiches on Pamela’s Wheat Free Bread (turkey & cheese, roast beef & cheese), Cold Pizza (Carol Fenster’s Crust topped with sauce, cheese & peppers), with various options like Fresh Fruit, stacked Hormel Pepperoni & cheese, Yogurt, Chips, Nature Valley Roasted Nut Crunch Bars, Lara Bars (chocolate mint, lemon, key lime), Chips (Cool Ranch Doritos, Blue Corn Chips, Pirate’s Booty). She also uses a thermos for meals like Spaghetti & meat sauce; Chili, cheese & chips; and Mac & Cheese. [Sea- A thermos is so useful for a hot GF meal when microwaves aren't an option!]

Karen has access to a microwave, and uses it to heat a can of Amy’s Tomato soup or grits with cheese leftover from breakfast. Sometimes she adds gluten free crackers and peanut butter. For a portable snack, she makes her own trail mix that has pecans, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, white chocolate chips, dried cranberries, and dried pineapple. It goes good with a gluten free pudding cup. [Sea- Homemade trail mix is a great way to avoid CC issues or suspect ingredients in some packaged trail mixes!]

*Add your ideas! you share!

I’d like this post to be a “work-in-progress” so I will be adding to it as time allows. Come back anytime!

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