I've wanted to make onigiri for a long time.
I have to admit this desire mostly began when I saw characters eating them in my favorite anime. Okay... so my interest was piqued entirely because of anime, just like 90% of the rest of my Japanophile tendencies (I credit 10% to the fact that Japan was the birthplace of my first love and temporary home of his sister, my best friend... it's only fair).
(I try not to talk about my nerdy side too much, so let's move on, shall we?)
While poring over my favorite bento site a few days ago (nevermind, this whole post is just going to be nerdy) I came across an excellent description of how to make the stuffed rice balls. I gathered my ingredients:
(smoked salmon + brown rice)
I didn't have any nori (the seaweed used to wrap most onigiri), but the recipe assured me that plain riceballs were just as authentic.
Of course, wanting to be even more authentic, I ignored the clever advice about using plastic wrap to shape the salted and freshly-cooked grains. I would to do it with my hands like I had seen over and over again, like a real Japanese person! How hard could it be?!
it hurt. a lot.
So, as I was saying, I decided to be smart and use the plastic-wrap method, since I was a beginner.
Lay some plastic wrap in a tea cup, sprinkle in salt + walter, add rice, make a little hole, insert filling (salmon in this case), cover, twist up plastic wrap, squeeze and shape...
My quick and tasty Japanese-style dinner.
Smoked salmon onigiri,
salad with sesame-ginger dressing,
and of course kukicha (green tea made from the twigs of the tea plant).
I was pleasantly surprised to find that the rice grains stuck together even after several bites. I had done it!
I had made onigiri like a real Japanese person (sort of)!
(so tasty and delicious)
Yes, it was a wonderful accomplishment.
I promptly celebrated by watching the next episode of Kaleido Star.