Shichimi Togarashi vs. Furikake: Japanese Condiments
Shichimi Togarashi (simply Shichimi) and Furikake are condiments representing Japan, which consist of mini flakes sprinkled on food when used.
If you only hear that, you might think they are the same thing.
Furikake vs. Shichimi Togarashi
But Furikake and Shichimi Togarashi (also Ichimi Togarashi) are different in many ways, and Shichimi isn’t a Furikake seasoning.
Then, how do they differ?
Furikake Seasoning Flakes
Usually, Furikake (ふりかけ) consists of several kinds of dry mini flakes/granules processed from ingredients such as meat, fish, egg, sesame seeds, or seaweed.
Other than these, various things, like sea urchin roe and Shiso or perilla leaves, can be the components of Furikake.
Shichimi Togarashi 7 Spice Blend
On the other hand, Shichimi Togarashi (七味唐辛子) only consists of 7 varieties of aromatic spices, and its first ingredient is finely ground red chili pepper.
For that reason, the Japanese spice mix, as a whole, usually looks red or orange, as seen in the photo above.
By the way, the six spices other than red chili pepper vary depending on the maker.
But they typically include Sansho pepper, Chinpi dried orange peel, poppy seeds, hemp seeds, Shiso/perilla leaves, green nori seaweed, black sesame seeds, or ginger.
Another primary difference between Furikake and Shichimi Togarashi is that Furikake is mainly used to season or flavor steamed plain rice.
Meanwhile, Shichimi is sprinkled on various foods to make them a little spicy and more flavorful.
Yakitori with Shichimi Togarashi
Specifically, we commonly use the spice blend for dishes such as udon, soba, miso soup, Gyudon beef bowl, Tsukemono pickles, or Yakitori grilled chicken skewers.
If you want to know more about the usage of Shichimi Togarashi, this article will help.