Rice ball

Onigiri


Do you like Onigiri? Onigiri also called “Omusubi” in Japan, are delicious and often eaten for breakfast, lunch, or as a light meal. It’s great for bringing with you for a picnic lunch as well! Making Onigiri at home is very easy and a lot of fun! In this blog, we will show you how to make Onigiri with plant-based fillings, but you can also use your favorite fillings. Why don't you try creating your unique Onigiri?

Onigiri made with the first new rice harvested of the year
Onigiri made with the first new rice we harvested this year

Make time: 50 minutes | Soak time: 30 minutes to 1 hour | Serves: 2 -3

 

Ingredients

400ml white rice

400ml filtered water


Ideas of Onigiri Fillings

Umeboshi (Pickled plum)

Yukari (Dried red shiso leaves)

Aonori (Dried seaweed)

Goma (Sesame seeds)

Miso


Nori sheets (Seaweed sheets)


Directions

1. Prepare white rice


Wash white rice. Soak it in water for 30 minutes to 1 hour, and drain the rice using a filter.


Put white rice in a pot. Add 400ml water. Put a lid on a pot. Heat them on medium heat. After boiling, heat them on lower heat for 10 to 12 minutes. Turn the heat off, and steam for 10 minutes.


Transfer the cooked rice to a bowl or an Ohitsu, a Japanese wooden bowl to let it cool enough to touch the rice with your hands.

Cooked rice in a Japanese wooden bowl
Cooked rice in Ohitsu

2. Prepare Onigiri Fillings and set them aside.


Umeboshi (Pickled plum)

Remove the seeds from the plums and roughly cut them.

Homemade Umeboshi, pickled plum
Homemade Umeboshi

Yukari (Dried red shiso leaves)

Yukari is a kind of Japanese Furikake (rice seasonings) made from red shiso leaves, and often eaten with rice or Onigiri.

Dried red shiso leaves, a kind of Japanese Furikake
Homemade Yukari

Aonori (Dried seaweed)

Aonori is Nori seaweed, which is often top on Yakisoba, and goes well with Onigiri as well.

Dried Nori seaweed
Aonori (Dried seaweed)

Goma (Sesame seeds)

Toast sesame seeds in a small frying pan. Toasting before using allows you to enjoy the aroma of the sesame seeds.

Toasting sesame seeds in a small frying pan

Grind the toasted sesame seeds a little with a mortar and pestle. If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, grind them with your fingers.

Grinding the toasted sesame seeds

3. Shape the rice into a triangle.


Add filtered water and plum vinegar if available to a small bowl. Put them on both hands to prevent the rice from sticking to the hands.


Grab some rice. Then form the rice into a triangle with both hands.


If you make Onigiri for a picnic on a hot day, or you share Onigiri with your friends, you may want to use plastic wrap, to shape them.

Forming the rice into a triangle.

Garnish the Onigiri with Yukari / Aonori and the toasted sesame seeds. And put Umeboshi in the center. Paste miso on another Onigiri and wrap it with a Nori sheet.

Garnishing the rice ball with dried seaweed.


Three kinds of rice balls
Three kinds of Onigiri

Rice balls and miso soup with Tofu
Onigiri and miso soup with Tofu


Growing rice


We grew rice for the first time this year. Almost everything was first for us. We learned how to grow rice from the local farmer. It was such a great experience to learn how to grow the food we eat every day.

Rice planting in May
Rice planting in May

In summer, rice plants grew strongly. Weeds grew a lot, too. So we mowed grasses every one or two weeks.

Rice paddy in summer
Rice paddy in summer

Rice paddy in summer
Rice paddy in summer

In autumn, the color of rice plants turned golden beautifully. The harvest season has come.

Rice paddy in autumn
Rice paddy in autumn

Rice harvesting
Rice harvesting

Drying the harvested rice plants under the sun
Drying the harvested rice plants under the sun


Threshing the harvested rice plants with traditional tools
Threshing the harvested rice plants with traditional tools

Sifting the threshed paddy with a sieve
Sifting the threshed paddy with a sieve

Drying sifted paddy under the sun
Drying sifted paddy under the sun

The first new rice harvested of the year
The first new rice harvested of the year

















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