Simple Fried Rice with Japanese Seven Spice

Simple Fried Rice with Japanese Seven Spice

I’ve gotten a lot of great comment and emails about the last dish I posted, along with pleas for post more “simple and easy meals.” So here’s one more. I wasn’t going to post this here, because it’s SO easy and SO straightforward, I thought it wasn’t necessarily blog-worthy. But my husband loves this dish and convinced me to go ahead and do a full post.

We make this meal pretty regularly now, because not only is it a no-brainer, but it also contains only ingredients we tend to have on hand at all times. So it’s the perfect “I don’t know what to make for dinner” dinner.

This is just your basic fried rice, but it has a secret ingredient (which is totally optional if you can’t find it and don’t want to grab it online). Japanese Seven Spice! Also called Shichimi Togarashi. Have you ever had this stuff? It’s totally awesome.

With a name like “seven spice” I’m sure you can guess that it’s made up of seven spices. They are: orange peel, black, white, and toasted sesame seeds, cayenne pepper, ginger, poppy seeds, Szechuan pepper, and nori. While the sesame seeds, nori, ginger and chilies are all very delicious, it’s the orange peel that really makes this spice mix for me. It gives it such a bright profile. I love this stuff on everything now, especially rice and noodle dishes.

I also use Wildwood baked tofu in this dish, because (again) this dish is built for speed and ease. You can find it at Whole Foods, or get the seemingly-identical Trader Joe’s version. You can also use your own baked tofu, too. I recommend the Wildwood/TJs stuff; it’s really tasty, nice and firm, and it fries up all pretty-like.

Simple Fried Rice with Japanese Seven Spice
Serves Two

1 Cup Brown Rice, dry
2 Cups Water

1-2 Tbs Vegetable Oil
1 Package Wildwood Baked Tofu, sliced into rectangles (or whatever your favorite tofu is)
1 Stalk Broccoli, chopped into florets
2-3 Carrots, peeled and chopped into chunks
2 Tbs Earth Balance
2 Tbs Tamari or Soy Sauce
1 Tbs Rice Vinegar
Japanese Seven Spice, to taste
2-3 Tbs Toasted Almonds

Start the rice in your rice cooker.

Meanwhile, heat a wok (or skillet, cast-iron preferred) over medium-high heat with a teaspoon or two of oil. Add the tofu and pan-fry until golden on all sides. Remove to a bowl.

Add carrots, with more oil if needed, to the hot wok and cook until tender and browned in places, 5-8 minutes depending on size of chunks. Remove to the same bowl the tofu is in.

Add broccoli to the wok, again adding a little more oil if needed. Cook until bright green and tender crisp, 3-4 minutes. Add the tofu and carrots back to the wok. Cover wok and turn off or to low heat until the rice is done cooking.

When the rice is done, add it to the wok with the vegetables and tofu. Add 2 tbs of Earth Balance margarine, 2 Tbs of tamari (or soy sauce) and 1 Tbs of rice vinegar. Mix well and taste for seasoning.

Plate and top with a generous amount of seven spice and toasted almonds. Serve. I think this would reheat well if you wanted to bring leftovers to work.

——–

Online Sources for Seven Spice:
The Spice House
S&B via Amazon

I have both these brands. The Spice House one is a coarser mix, a little heavier on the nori, and therefore not bright red like the S&B. I was worried that the S&B would be much spicier, but it’s not. They’re definitely different styles of the same mix, but they’re both GREAT. The S&B is what is pictured on this dish.

Simple Fried Rice with Japanese Seven Spice

40 comments

  1. Kathleen

    That looks great – I’ve been meaning to try Japanese 7 Spice for a while and I love love love fried rice!

    What kind of flavor does the baked tofu you used have? Is it teriyaki or smoked…?

    I used teriyaki here, but I also like savory.

  2. Whistlepea

    I have this S&B spice. I got it in Japan but I never really knew what it was called in English or what was in it before! Can’t wait to try this. Is the Wildwood tofu flavoured?

    It is flavored! My favorites are the Savory and the Teriyaki, but all of their flavors are good.

  3. ginger

    holy cow, this looks fantastic and so easy!! even if you can’t get the japanese 7 spice, it looks like something someone could easily put together on their own.

  4. Renee

    I highly recommend making extra rice every time you cook it, then keeping the extra in the fridge or freezer. Fried rice is always better with leftover rice, and it cuts tons of time off the prep.

  5. Emily

    This is such a coincidence for me! I was walking home today and thinking “I love fried rice! Why have I never made it? I bet I could do it, I’ll just look up a vegan recipe…” And then, BAM! Fried rice fate!

  6. Jade

    Hi, I just found your blog yesterday and I love it! I’m vegetarian rather than vegan but your food looks so delicious and the photography is beautiful! I live on my own and as this looks like something I could easily eat the leftovers from, I think I will try this dish!

  7. bek

    It’s definitely blog-worthy! This sounds delicious – I definitely want to make it soon. You always have the yummiest recipes – I’m excited to try this one! =)

  8. Heather

    Hi Lolo!!

    I LOVE your blog, and have been reading for a long while. It has brought me so much happiness and deliciousness :)
    I was wondering what kind of stir-fry pan you use? I have one that tofu always sticks to, and it drives me crazy. Any suggestions? Thanks!
    Heather

  9. Ani

    Mmm, homework procrastination has once again landed me a delicious dinner plan! So now I shall put off the homework once more for a quick trip to the store and then delicious…. (Unless you can make something equally good out of capers, two shriveled carrots, an onion end and maybe 1/4 cup whole wheat spaghetti? ‘Cause that’s all I’ve got…)

  10. Jackie

    Interesting, I haven’t heard of Japanese 7 spice. However, I always buy a jar of Yasai Fumi Furikake at my Asian grocery. The ingredients are sesame seed, carrot, spinach, pumpkin, celery, Japanese mustard plant, sugar, salt, and nori. It’s not spicy at all like the 7 spice, but still completely addictive.

  11. Carla Irvin

    Togarishi—one of my favorite things. We use it liberally on almost anything asian. Peanut udon noodles and togarishi–perfect! Thanks for an easy and tasty looking recipe.

  12. Cuchinista

    I thought I had gone through my local Japanese grocer with a fine-tooth comb, but have never stumbled on Togarishi. Thanks so much for giving me a good recipe to try, and a great new ingredient.

  13. vanessa

    so simple, fast and extremely yummy! thank you.

    we had all the ingredients at home except for the broccoli so i substituted some shelled edamame. it was excellent.

  14. Tara

    Thank you Thank you Thank you!! I’m not vegan. I’m broke, busy, and single. These meals (this and the last one) are exactly what I needed. I’m tired of hamburger helper and ramen. I need to eat healthier, but I don’t have the time to be cooking up lots of fancy meals and I never feel like eating a salad…and besides the lettuce or spinach usually goes bad before I eat it. Anyway, thank you again. These meals are easy, fast, healthy, and most importantly delicious!!

  15. hi-chan

    I use this spice mix on pan-fried tofu all the time! It’s also great on udon noodles with a little bit of sesame oil and soy sauce. It’s also totally good on all kinds of sauteed veggies. Ok, so it’s pretty much good on everything….

  16. Veganacious

    This is sure to become all all-time favorite; healthy, simple and yummy. I especially like the toasted almonds and Seven-Spice toppings. Simply fabulous – thank you!

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  18. Tizmarelda

    Thank you hubby! So glad he convinced you to post this. I just got done eating it, and it is delicious. I didn’t have the 7 spice, instead I used seaweed gomasio and some chili powder, and it was quite yummy.

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  24. Jen

    I just made this for dinner using plain tofu and chinese 5 spice powder (I know thats not the same but I figured it was better than nothing). It was so good!! I loved it, I will be making this again.

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