From elderly people on a pilgrimage to adults on a business trip, and from children on a school trip to teenagers chatting on a park bench: onigiri is the snack you will see in each and every Japanese street scenery. The classic onigiri is a triangular rice ball with a stuffing, wrapped in roasted seaweed. The versatility of this snack makes it very popular in Japan. Difficult to prepare? Not at all! With our tips and tricks it will be simple and straightforward!
Step 1: Prepare the rice
Ideally, the rice leftovers of the previous day are used, because the rice has to be cooled down. Leave the rice of the previous meal in the rice cooker overnight, while turned off. The next day, take out the rice from the rice cooker using the non-metal ladle. Place the rice in the onigiri mold. Make sure the mold is filled a little less than half, and press tightly using the ladle.
Note: Japanese rice is wetter and stickier than other rice. Other, dry varieties of rice are not suitable, as the rice ball would fall apart! How to deal with sticky rice? Make sure your hands are clean, then wet your hands with warm water. Now the rice won’t stick to your hands. Repeat when you notice the rice is starting to stick to your hands again.
Step 2: Add the stuffing
Time to add the stuffing! In the video below, seaweed (wakame) is used, but there are many, many more possibilities! Try our suggestions:
- Beni sha-ke (salmon, seasoned with wasabi mayonnaise)
- Tsunamayo (tuna and mayonnaise)
- Masago (fish roe, seasoned with wasabi to your own preference)
Put a little stuffing on the rice (not too much, as you won’t be able to close the rice ball). Finish by filling the mold with rice until the edge and pressing it until it fits perfectly.
Suggestion: When it comes to stuffing you can be as creative as you’d like. From veggies and fruit to sausages or melted cheese: knock yourself out!
Step 3: Wrap the onigiri in roasted seaweed
But how to wrap the onigiri with seaweed? Check our video below. All of the products in this video are available in our webshop. The advantage of this specific seaweed product is that the seaweed and its contents will stay in form and clean after wrapping, and it is easy to bring along as a snack. Also, it looks super professional: as if you just bought it from a store!
- Looking for an alternative to meat or fish? Try our meat substitutes.
- Want to add a little extra to the white rice? How about mixing in some furikake (rice seasoning powder) from the brand Tanaka?