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Rice Balls

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Rice balls are called onigiri in Japanese. They are usually shaped into rounds or triangles by hands. Fillings can vary, so it's good to use your favorite fillings.


  • 4 cups steamed Japanese rice
  • salt to taste
  • black sesame seeds
  • strips of dried nori seaweed
  • for fillings (optional):
  • ume (pickled plum) / grilled salted salmon (small chunks) / katsuobushi (dried bonito flakes) seasoned with soy sauce


Put about a half cup of steamed rice in a rice bowl. Wet your hands in water so that the rice won't stick. Rub some salt on your hands. Place the steamed rice on your hand and put your favorite filling, such as umeboshi or grilled salmon on the rice. Push the filling into the rice lightly. Hold the rice between your palms. Form the rice into a round, a triangle, or a cylinder by pressing lightly with your both palms. Roll the rice ball on your hands a few times, pressing lightly. Wrap the rice ball with a strip of nori or sprinkle some sesame seeds on them.

Makes 8 rice balls.

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