I just had a brainwave today. I bought some inari on one of my forays to little groceries in search of low carb options. Inari sushi is a lovely sushi item that is a sushi rice filled fried tofu pocket. It can be served with plain sushi rice (my kids used to love this) or a sushi rice mix that includes other little goodies like seafood and vegetables.
It is not often that we have a lot of leftovers in the fridge. This is because helper D usually packs leftovers for kid#1 and kid#2’s lunches. But I had just had some friends over and we had made way too much cauliflower rice for dinner and there was a good amount sitting in the fridge. So it was a happy thought to take some of the leftover cauliflower rice and mix it up with some seaweed and sesame seed seasoning, some hijiki seaweed and pop it into the inari.
Inari can easily be found in Japanese groceries and supermarkets. It is a little sweet but nonetheless only about 2.5 – 3.5g carbs per piece and is the perfect little carrier for seasoned cauliflower rice. I usually have a little dried hijiki seaweed in my pantry and seaweed seasoning mix, but I think this can be fantastic with a whole lot of creative options to mix into the cauliflower rice.
On a side note, I was hugely amused when another low carb buddy, M, shared a post with me about how rice farmers in America have taken offense with the word “rice” being used in the name “cauliflower rice”. Low Carb is taking the world by storm and agriculture is probably just catching up! But I feel the man on the street is still woefully under-informed. I still hear of people who substitute quinoa and brown rice for white rice…I’ve had to point out that white rice has 27 carbs per 100 g and brown rice and quinoa has 23 carbs per 100g. And in comparison, Cauliflower has only 4g carbs per 100g. And I think cauliflower mash beats potato mash in flavour any time.
Anyway, back to Inari. I’ve always been thinking of easy packable lunch options. To be honest I’m slightly tired of the wraps that D has been packing for me, but I thought I didn’t have much of a choice because my morning clinics often over-run and I have had days where I have the sad option of either taking a toilet break or having an ultra-quick lunch in the 5 minutes I get between clinic sessions. So I may make inari my next easy lunch option that does not need reheating, is easy to carry and makes a good and filling lunch on busy days.
Inari pockets on the left and the seaweed and sesame seed seasoning mix on the right. I don’t read Japanese so I can’t give the names of these items!
Low Carb Inari
- 1 packet of inari (fried tofu pockets); my packet had 12 pieces.
- 2 cups of cooked cauliflower rice
- 1 tbsp dried hijiki seaweed
- 2 tbsp seaweed and sesame seasoning mix
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Selected toppings (in this case I used raw shredded carrots; other options could be chopped coriander, spring onions or thinly sliced egg omelette).
- Soak the hijiki seaweed for 5 minutes in hot water. Drain and pat dry.
- Mix the cauliflower rice, hijiki seaweed and seaweed and sesame seed seasoning mix. Taste and add salt and pepper if necessary.
- Open the inari packet and carefully open up the pocket of a piece of inari. Tuck the edges of the inari inwards and downwards.
- Fill the inari pocket with the cauliflower rice mixture. Continue to do this for the rest of the inari pieces.
- Top the inari with either finely shredded carrots or coriander or thinly sliced egg omelette.
- Place in a container and refrigerator until ready to serve.