Sesame Allergy

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Sesame Allergy

Postby JBDoodles » Fri Jan 09, 2009 4:09 pm

It seems like every time I try to make a Japanese dish, one of the ingredients is either sesame oil or sesame seeds. My local asian market doesn't sell any furikake that doesn't have sesame seeds in it. Does anyone know a suitable replacement in recipes for sesame products?
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby Kyoki » Sun Jan 11, 2009 3:16 am

Does sesame oil have a specific flavor or something? I mean, you could just replace it with olive oil or another cooking oil of your choice.
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby JBDoodles » Sun Jan 11, 2009 8:06 am

I have tried a few recipes and replaced sesame oil with olive oil, but I wonder if it changes the flavor of the recipe. Maybe there is an oil out there that has a similar flavor to sesame oil.
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby gfbentomom » Sun Jan 11, 2009 8:09 am

I haven't tried subs but I think it might depend on the recipe. I use clear sesame oil for a salad dressing and it has very little if any flavor in my opinion, so any other neutral oil would work well. Roasted sesame oil has a slight nutty flavor so maybe peanut oil? as a sub. I haven't worked with peanut oil so am just guessing. In a recipe like horenso gomae(sesame spinach) I have seen recipes that use ground nuts(walnut or almond?) instead of the sesame.
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby TNT » Mon Jan 12, 2009 8:51 am

If you're not allergic to nuts, you could try a nut oil, like walnut.

It would give you that nutty flavor without the sesame. You can probably find specialty oils in the salad dressing aisle.
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby Fabiano » Mon Jan 12, 2009 4:49 pm

Regarding substitutions for sesame products, I have seen some "Japanese" recipes which used chopped peanuts or chopped almonds. You could indeed use almond oil or peanut oil instead of sesame oil, however, be aware that almond oil has a low heat tolerance and is best used in dressings and kept refrigerated so that it does not turn rancid. Peanut oil has a high heat tolerance and is great for all cooking and does not need to be refrigerated.

For furikake, the book, "Bento Boxes - Japanese Meals on the Go" by Naomi Kijima, has some furikake and rice seasoning recipes without sesame seeds. This book also contains plenty of recipes that do not contain sesame products at all.

If you feel adventurous and want to follow the Japanese philosophy of cooking with what is available to you during the varying seasons where you live, then you may want to experiment with using sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, celery seeds, poppy seeds, or even cumin seeds.

Seeds are best stored in the refrigerator in jars to avoid turning rancid during long storage. Sunflower, pumpkin, and cumin seeds digest better when lightly toasted in a dry skillet or oven, and then ground or chopped.

There are also a variety of furikake recipes at http://justbento.com/category/filed-under/furikake . Good luck and have fun!
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby Libby » Wed Jan 14, 2009 10:17 pm

I pulled out my copy of "The Food Substitution Bible" by David Joachim, which I strongly recommend for anyone with multiple food allergies. For cooking, the oils it lists with the closest smoke point to sesame (415°F) are corn and olive oil (both 410°F.)

Some of the oils listed for "Salad, Sauce, and Flavoring" which may be comparable are almond, grapeseed, hazelnut, macadamia, pecan, pumpkin seed, and sunflower. Hope that helps!
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby Biggie » Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:56 pm

Libby wrote:I pulled out my copy of "The Food Substitution Bible"


Ooh, nice reference! Thanks for the recommend.
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Re: Sesame Allergy

Postby JBDoodles » Fri Jan 16, 2009 6:35 pm

Wow, thanks everyone! Now I don't have to skip recipes that call for Sesame. :D
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