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Sushi Grains in Fried Tofu Pockets [Vegan]

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I wanted a sushi that was nutritious, and delicious enough so that anyone eating it would enjoy it for what it was and not immediately think "health food"!

My rice mixture is made from short grain brown rice with some millet or quinoa added, and it is nicely seasoned. The grain mixture provides variety and extra nutrients, but the texture of the rice predominates, which is what I prefer. This whole grain sushi mix does not taste heavy or starchy, and I was happy to discover that the seasoned fried tofu pockets or pouches (agé) are less calorific and fat-laden than I had assumed - the seasoned ones contain only about 60 calories per pouch. We love it for summer meals.

Sushi Grains in Fried Tofu Pockets [Vegan]

This Recipe is :

Dairy Free Vegan




  • 16 storebought seasoned inari sushi pouches

OR, if you are preparing your own seasoned inari sushi pouches, you will need:

  • 1 package (80 g– 8 pieces) of abura agé (plain, unseasoned Japanese fried tofu rectangles), cut across in half to make “pouches” (You can buy them refrigerated or frozen in Asian grocery stores and some natural food stores in small packets.)
Flavoring Broth:
  • 1 cup vegan broth
  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 Tablespoons unbleached light organic sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons dry sherry or mirin (Japanese rice wine) (or a non-alcoholic sweetish white wine)


Grain Choice #1:

  • 3/4 cup Japanese short grain brown rice + 1/4 cup toasted millet, cooked together 40-45 minutes in
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • Toast the millet in a dry heavy saute pan or skillet over medium heat, stirring all the while, until light brown and fragrant. If the grains start to pop, reduce the heat.
OR Grain Choice #2:
  • 1/2 cup Japanese short grain brown rice cooked in 2/3 cup water for 45 minutes
  • 1/2 cup quinoa cooked separately in 1 cup water for 15 minutes  
  • Let the quinoa stand, covered, off the heat 10 minutes
  • 2 Tablespoons plain rice vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons unbleached light organic sugar
  • 3/8 tsp. salt
Optional but recommended:
  • 1 Tablespoon dry sherry or mirin (Japanese rice wine)
  • 1/2 cup frozen baby peas, thawed
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and finely grated
  • Toasted sesame seeds to taste


  1. If you are preparing your own seasoned inari sushi pouches, cut each piece ofabura agé tofu across in half.  Pour boiling water over them, then drain and squeeze them carefully to remove the oil.
  2.  In a medium pot, bring the flavoring broth to a boil, add the tofu pockets and reduce the heat.  Simmer for 5 minutes, turning now and then.  Drain and cool until you can handle them.  Gently squeeze out excess liquid.
  3. Whichever type of seasoned pouches you are using– store-bought or home-prepared– carefully separate one “wall” of each pocket from the other to make the pouches.
  4.  Dump the hot cooked rice (make sure it is tender) and the millet or quinoa into a large shallow baking dish.  Mix the sugar and salt with the vinegar and wine until it is dissolved.  Pour this over the hot rice.  Turn the rice mixture with a small spatula (wooden, preferably, or a bamboo rice paddle), using an over-and-under-motion, until the mixture is cool.  (Traditionally, you fan the rice while you mix.)
  5.  Add the peas and carrots and a bit of the optional toasted sesame seeds, if you like.  Stuff the pockets carefully and evenly (there should be just enough filling for 16 pockets). Traditionally the pouches are not stuffed full and the pouch is pinched closed at the top, but, as you can see in the pictures, I usually fill them full and leave them open at the top.  
  6. If you like, you can dip the tops in toasted sesame seeds.  Serve at room temperature. Rice gets hard when refrigerated, which spoils the texture of the dish, so the sushi pouches should be eaten the same day they are made.





Bryanna Clark Grogan, vegan 26 years, author of eight books, has over 40 years experience as a chef, teacher, and journalist. Among her titles are World Vegan Feast, Nonna’s Kitchen, Authentic Chinese Cuisine, The Almost No Fat Cookbook and the Fiber for Life Cookbook. She was recipe author for the book Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes. A teacher, lecturer and former newspaper columnist, her blog is at Vegan Feast Kitchen.



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9 comments on “Sushi Grains in Fried Tofu Pockets [Vegan]”

Click to add comment
Cynthia Kantor
4 Years Ago

OOOOOOOOH! I gotta make some of this

Michael A Cugudda
4 Years Ago

Without parasites too.

Bianca Sequeira
4 Years Ago

Valérie Lepage-Corbeil version santé mis a part la friture

Catherine Yetter
4 Years Ago

Want this

Lori Westfall
4 Years Ago

I make these frequently however ill blend brown and organic white short grain heirloom rice as the brown ends up being too gluey. Also some shredded carrots are a nice touch of color and texture but peas are just kind of a no. I'd also recommend using rice vinegar (low sodium) or oddly better Apple cider vinegar (but no added salt) Make sure when you are purchasing the bean curd pouches to check the labels as often they can contain preservatives, msg etc. They also can be quite sugary. They can often be found in cans, freezer/ fridge sections or in nonrefridgerated pouches. Do not overstuff or they will easily tear. A smaller ice cream disher works great for even portions. Ginger on the side is essential but be aware of preservatives, msg and HFCs on the label though.

Brandy Ochoa
4 Years Ago

SalsaJoe Ochoa

Daniela Giorgi
4 Years Ago

looks great!

Zeb Monte
4 Years Ago

Inari is not complete without pickled ginger slices. :)

Bryanna Clark Grogan
27 Sep 2014

Go for it!

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