Onigirazu (Cabinet Cookery)

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Onigirazu is a rice ball that one does not need to roll in their hands, or touch the filling, as it is wrapped in seaweed wrap. The end result is a sandwich-like onigiri, or rice ball. The making of this is very recent, having first appeared in 1990 in the manga “Cooking Papa”.

Like many food in Japanese manga and anime, this meal soon became a real-life hit. Today, it is enjoyed by many around the world who are exposed to Japanese cuisine, such as myself. Not only does this make a great meal, or lunch on the go, but it is a great Cabinet Cookery, in which one only needs to reach into their fridge, cabinets, etc. and make a meal using what is available.

I happen to have seaweed wrap, rice, thin slices of beef, green onions, and other condiments, so I immediately thought of making onigirazu for dinner. This quick meal can be made using anything for the filling, from vegetables to your choice of protein.

The next time you’re questioning what to make for dinner, or enjoy any time of the day, give these Onigirazu a try.

Recipe: (Note: estimated measurements used)

  1. 4 servings thin slices of beef
  2. 3 stalks green onion, cut into 1 inch pieces
  3. Thumb-sized ginger, grated
  4. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 2 Tbs. soy sauce
  6. ½ tsp. sugar
  7. Salt and black pepper
  8. Plastic wrap
  9. 4 Seaweed wraps
  10. 8 Tbsp. cooked rice
  11. 1 Tbsp. oil

In a bowl, add the beef, ginger, garlic, soy sauce and sugar. Massage together and set aside for 5 minutes.

Then heat the oil in a pan and add the marinated beef. Cook until most of the juices have evaporated. For some color, drain the juices and allow the beef to brown in the pan. And remove from the heat.

In a bowl, mix the cooked rice with a pinch of salt and black pepper, and set aside.

Lay 1 seaweed wrap on plastic wrap. Add 1 tablespoon of rice in the middle and spread out to form a thin circle. Layer on some beef, green onion, beef again, and another tablespoon of rice. Wrap the filling within the seaweed wrap, using the plastic wrap to help you. Fully enclose within the plastic wrap and set aside while you make the rest of the onigirazu.

Cut each onigirazu in half and enjoy as a sandwich^-^

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