Japanese rice balls with homemade furikake (seaweed sesame seasoning), encasing freshly baked salmon or any other ingredient you like. Onigiri is a quintessential Japanese dish that can be eaten for any meal, as a side or healthy snack.
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Ingredients (3 servings)
For the rice balls (onigiri):
400g salmon (1 can)
300g short grain rice (1 1/2 cup)
1 tsp ginger powder
2 tsp mirin
For the seasoning (furikake):
3 pieces nori (Japanese seaweed), shredded
2 tbsp sesame seeds
-A handful bonito flakes, shredded
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sweetener / sugar
Make the rice
Pre-heat the oven to 220°C / 425°F
Wash and cook 1 1/2 cups of rice.
Make the furikake
While your rice cooks, in a bowl, add shredded seaweed, sesame seeds, salt, sugar and bonito flakes and toss to mix.
Put mixture in a pan on low heat and toast for 8-10 mins, or until lightly toasted. Keep stirring to ensure everything is evenly toasted.
Remove from heat, wait until cooled, approx 5-10mins, then transfer into a container.
Cook the salmon
In a bowl, break the canned salmon into pieces. Season with ginger powder, mirin, and mix well.
Then, place the salmon in an even layer on an oven-safe tray and toast in the oven for 8-10 mins, or until lightly toasted.
Remove salmon from the oven and set aside. Keep the oven on for toasting the onigiri later.
Assemble the onigiri
Once your rice is cooked, allow it cool for 5 minutes. Then, take a generous amount of your homemade furikake and add it to the warm rice. Mix until well combined.
When assembling the rice balls, make sure your hands are really wet otherwise the rice will stick to your hands and make the onigiri difficult to form.
To assemble the rice balls, take a palm-sized amount of your furikake rice, shape it slightly flat with a dent in the centre, then add an appropriate amount of salmon into the centre.
Fold in the sides of the rice to enclose the salmon, then shape until they resemble rice balls.
Lay the rice balls in a single layer on a baking tray and pop in the oven for 10 mins, or until slightly brown and toasted. Then, flip over and toast for another 10 mins or until lightly toasted.
Remove from the oven and serve with a side of your favourite vegetables or protein.
Pro-tip: keep a bowl of water next to you while assembling the rice balls so that you can easily and regularly dip your hands in to keep them wet.
Feel free to adjust the size of these onigiri balls along with the filling. Sautéd mushrooms, edamame, tuna and whole eggs are common fillings you can try!
Wrap them in an extra layer of seaweed for more crunch and flavor.
These are best served immediately, but you may store leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 1 day. If storing, do not wrap extra seaweed around the onigiri as the seaweed will become soggy. Reheat them in the oven at for about 10-15 mins before serving.