Friday, August 21, 2009


E recently decided to stop taking naps, so there's been a lot less time for crafting lately. So instead, I decided to have her help me try out some of my new bento goodies. I have a bunch of rice (onigiri) molds that I've been dying to try out. E has never been a big fan of rice (it almost makes me wonder how we're related), but she really enjoyed making these rice shapes the other day.

I realized after playing around with some of the mold the other night that most of them are going to make onigiri that are way too big for most kids to eat. But on a whim, I did pick up this cute set that makes little shapes.

IMG_10947 by you.

If you do a basic google search for onigiri, you'll find lots of links to recipes and how-to's. For the uninitiated, it's basically a big old ball of rice, usually vaguely triangular with something in the middle. I'm not a big fan of plain rice, or of the traditional Japanese fillings (like umeboshi), so I decided to wing it with some other stuff I had on hand. My two favorites of late? Furikake and pork sung.

I have nori furikake, which is basically bits of nori (seaweed), sesame seeds, salt & sugar. It comes in lots of flavors though, including salmon, shrimp, etc.

IMG_10948 by you.

So as I mentioned before, I don't often eat plain rice - usually I eat it with stir-fry, leftovers, or even as a super basic fried rice with just scrambled eggs, onion powder & sesame oil. But once in a while, I'll eat it with some furikake sprinkled on top. It's still rather bland that way though though, so I decided to add some pork sung too.

Again, for those that aren't familiar, pork sung is basically pork that's been dried with sugar, soy sauce and usually lard & MSG (hey, I didn't say this was healthy food!), and then ground up so it has sort of a fluffy, powdery consistency. There's also pork fu, which is similar, but a bit more stringy. I'll admit, it's not for everyone. T thinks it's weird and is not a huge fan, but I grew up eating it, usually with rice porridge, so it has a comfort food aspect that appeals to me.

It normally comes in a small tub, but since I'm a freak, I have the gigantor jar.
IMG_10949 by you.

Anyways, I mixed a bit of each with some warm white rice.
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Then I spooned rice into each of the molds, and E helped by pushing the rice down.
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Put the top on and press.
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Then flip it over and pop out the finished rice shapes out! Voila! (Excuse the crazy background - E insisted I use this plate)

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I was really surprised that E actually ate these since she's shown little interest in rice up until now. Although to be honest, she ate maybe 2 of the 4 shapes, and I ate the other two. I think she enjoyed making them more than eating them because she asks me every day now to make more. I'm going to work on coming up with some other fillings to mix in and hopefully these will become a regular fixture in her school lunches. Slight word of warning, these do dry out quickly if you leave them out, so either eat them right away or wrap them up and put them in your fridge for later.

IMG_10959 by you.


Jacki said...

so the pretty ones on the plate are the nori-tainted ones??
Those turned out great!! I bet E loves smooshing the rice.
Just don't ever feed me those, ok? :)

Alison said...

Cute! That's the best thing about being a toddler - the process is often better than the finished product :)


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