We first got hooked on Mika Hatsushima Soleimanpour’s incredibly delicious onigiri rice balls at the Brooklyn Flea, where she has a booth called Rice & Miso Everyday. So we were thrilled when Mika came to our west elm Market store in Dumbo earlier this month to teach a cooking class on making simple, healthy, traditional Japanese food at home, including her onigiri!
Mika has generously allowed us to share her recipe. While there are hundreds of types of onigiri, this is Rice & Miso Everday’s signature style. Try it and let us know what you think!
Onigiri Rice Balls
1. Cook The Rice
– Rinse your desired amount of short grain brown rice, and soak overnight.
– Drain rice, and add to a cast iron pot, using a water-to-rice ratio of 2:1.
– Bring water to a boil, then turn to low and slowly cook for 45-50 minutes.
– Turn off heat, and let rice sit for an extra 10 minutes, to moisten.
2. Make The Filling
– Open a can of Italian tuna in olive oil, and drain well. Break the tuna up into small pieces in a bowl.
– Add sea salt, 1/4 cup of mayonnaise, and a 1 tsp of ‘mentsuyu’ sauce (available in Asian specialty stores) or regular soy sauce.
– Mix until filling gets a creamy texture.
3. Shape The Onigiri
– Wet both hands.
– Put some sea salt on both palms.
– Take enough warm rice to fill one palm, and push it lightly in the middle to make an indentation for the filling.
– Add filling, and fold the rest of rice around it.
– Form a triangular or round shape using both hands. Try not to squeeze too tightly!
– Wrap rice with Nori seaweed.
Images: Leela Rupa Le Noury