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Onigiri


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When eating outdoor, Japanese often brings rice balls(see the pic below). They are equiavalent to the sandwiches in Western countries.

RiceBall.jpg

They are designed to keep for a fairly long time, since the rice and the fillings used are seasoned with salt. Popular fillings are broiled salted salmon, cod roe, pickled plum,,,and so on. Since you can fill anything, the variations are infinite. They are usually wrapped in a black-paper-like sheet of NORI(dried seeweed). It might look weird to you, but tastes good.

Rice Balls are sold at "convenience stores" in urban area in Japan, as they are popular for quick lunch.

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  • 2 years later...

The weather is getting nice and it is time to start enjoying our food outside! :biggrin:

What better than onigiri?

what are your favorites?

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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Rice Balls are sold at "convenience stores" in urban area in Japan, as they are popular for quick lunch.

Correction: not only in urban areas but also in rural areas such as mine.

I have a low opinion of rice balls sold at convenience stores. There is one good convenience store called Orange Heart in my town, which makes rice balls from 100% Shiozawa-produced Koshihikari rice.

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Favourite Onigiri

Tuna with mayo

Eggplant with miso

Fried Chicken with Kimchi

Or just mix in some furikake with the rice and shape into onigiri.... is it still called onigiri even though it doesn't have any filling?

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Or just mix in some furikake with the rice and shape into onigiri.... is it still called onigiri even though it doesn't have any filling?

Yes.

***

My favorites:

Salmon

Pickled plum

Tuna with mayo (or tuna only; you know, mayo is high in calories)

Furikake (Nameshi, Yukari, etc., which I mentioned in the furikake thread)

Edited by Hiroyuki (log)
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I really love onigiri and with 3 kids it is a wonderfully cheap lunch, when you make your own!

Some of my favorites:

yukari

grilled semi-dried fish (himono) flaked and mixed with shiso and sesame seeds

really salty salmon grilled then flaked and stuffed into the middle

yaki-onigiri (grilled) I like to do these on the BBQ and my favorite is to spread them with kochujang (Korean pepper miso) and wrap them with an ekoma or shiso leaf

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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My favorite is "sea chicken," with or without mayo. I'm not a big fan of umeboshi the way it's usually served (a single plum in the middle of the rice ball) as it's a little too intense for me. However, I've had onigiri with umeboshi finely chopped and mixed throughout the rice, which was just right for me, very refreshing. I also once had an onigiri with a spaghetti-style red meat sauce mixed in (onigiri bolognese?), which was surprisingly very good.

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I'm not a big fan of umeboshi the way it's usually served (a single plum in the middle of the rice ball) as it's a little too intense for me.  However, I've had onigiri with umeboshi finely chopped and mixed throughout the rice, which was just right for me, very refreshing.

Me either. That's why I sometimes make umeboshi paste. But I put the paste at the center of the rice ball, not mix it with the rice.

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I'm not a big fan of umeboshi the way it's usually served (a single plum in the middle of the rice ball) as it's a little too intense for me. However, I've had onigiri with umeboshi finely chopped and mixed throughout the rice, which was just right for me, very refreshing.

I often do this with the kari kari ume. the crunchy ones. I chop them up and then mix them with the rice before making the onigiri.

For whole umeboshi I prefer the hachimitsu (honey) umeboshi, there aren't nearly as salty.

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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No offence to you mayonnaise lovers, but it should be illegal to put mayo in an onigiri.

Smallworld,

I am so with you on this one!

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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No offence to you mayonnaise lovers, but it should be illegal to put mayo in an onigiri.

Smallworld,

I am so with you on this one!

It's not illegal. You won't be arrested for doing so. But you may be arrested for saying so.

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  • 3 weeks later...

This is another page of Gourmet Ranking, which I mentioned in another thread:

http://guriuri.com/ranking/ranking.asp?ID=16&TNO=625

Question: What are your favorite onigiri ingredients?

Top five:

Sea chicken (tuna) with mayo

Mentaiko (spicy cod roe)

Salmon

Umeboshi (pickled plum)

Tarako (cod roe)

The quetionnaire is still open.

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My current favorite onigiri is...miso-flavored rice, with fukujin-zuke in the middle, rolled in sesame seeds (optional) and wrapped in nori (absolutely NOT optional - the miso makes the rice too soft to hold together well!).

I've tried toasting the miso before adding it to the rice, and reducing the amount of miso, but either the fat or the moisture content (or both) of the miso, makes it impossible to get a really firm onigiri. But I can't give up, because it tastes so good! Next I'm going to cheat and try mixing a bit of powdered instant miso soup into the rice...

Another recent favorite...finely chopped shiba-zuke in the rice, with chopped takuan in the middle, ribbon of nori to make it easier to hold.

Can you tell that we've had sports day at son's middle school recently?!

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There's this onigiri store in the basement of Pepe (in the Seibu Shinjuku Station) that includes brown-rice onigiri among its varied selection. But my favorite is their 和風ツナ (wafu tsuna)=Japanese tasting tuna (white rice though). I have to admit that while it does have mayo mixed with the tuna, they also add katsuobushi (dried/flaked bonito) and wrap them in seaweed. To me theese onigiri taste really great! I experimented on my own at home and added sesame seeds too.

It's funny how the combination of that fishy-tasting katsuobushi to the already fishy-tasting tuna makes for a whole new taste. Like 1 + 1 does = 3.

I've ranted about MAYO in the other thread Mayonaise Kitchen but at least it's with Tuna and not with kim chee or chocolate pudding. :wink:

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There's this onigiri store in the basement of Pepe (in the Seibu Shinjuku Station) that includes brown-rice onigiri among its varied selection. But my favorite is their 和風ツナ (wafu tsuna)=Japanese tasting tuna (white rice though). I have to admit that while it does have mayo mixed with the tuna, they also add katsuobushi (dried/flaked bonito) and wrap them in seaweed. To me theese onigiri taste really great! I experimented on my own at home and added sesame seeds too.

It's funny how the combination of that fishy-tasting katsuobushi to the already fishy-tasting tuna makes for a whole new taste. Like 1 + 1 does = 3.

I've ranted about MAYO in the other thread Mayonaise Kitchen but at least it's with Tuna and not with kim chee or chocolate pudding. :wink:

Pompollo, you're on the Seibu Shinjuku line? Me too!

I checked out Pepe's depachika after they renovated it a few years back, and I was not impressed. I'll have to go back and check out the onigiri shop.

Thanks for the tip.

My eGullet foodblog: Spring in Tokyo

My regular blog: Blue Lotus

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Gee, so it is a "Smallworld" after all. ha ha. :biggrin:

I'll have to agree that the depachika at the Pepe still isn't much. But the onigiri place, called Gonbei 権米衛, is a nice alternative to konbini store onigiri and sandwiches! Good size and great for buying and bringing to eat outdoors (manami comes to mind.)

Also, this store has people selling onigiri (only a few kinds, though) from two stands in the mornings outside the kaisatsuguchi area as you leave the train, just in case you are there in the mornings.

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  • 1 month later...

part of our BBQ last night was yaki onigiri (grilled rice balls), these were simple ones just gilled with a miso-mirin mixture. We used the same miso sauce to smear on grilled goya, which was really good!.

i11566.jpg

I normally do them a little more charred but by the time we got around to cooking them the fire was pretty much gone.... :sad:

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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I was just thinking about onigiri - we are often not in Japan in midsummer, so recent school trips have meant different types of onigiri!

Nicest in hot weather was one with finely chopped shiso and scallions, stuffed with shreds of red ginger pickle. This homemade pickle was more gingery and less vinegary than commercial pickles, a nice warm contrast to the shiso.

Meanwhile, those yaki-onigiri are looking pretty good, charred or not!

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