Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Just One Food - Furikake

What is "furikake"?  Well, it's like the salt and pepper of Japan.  It's a dry Japanese seasoning that typically consists of roasted sesame seeds, chopped dried nori (seaweed) and bonito fish flakes along with salt and sugar.  It comes in a variety of flavours including salmon, shrimp, wasabi, powdered egg granules, shisho, kimchi and powdered miso.

I can't believe I discovered furikake so late in life! ^_~  This flavour-packed seasoning is great sprinkled on cooked rice, noodles, fish, chicken, vegetables, tofu...or, well, just about anything.

I was first introduced to this when I found this salty, fragrant condiment sprinkled on top of the poke bowl I ordered at Eatomo.  Maybe I had already eaten it earlier but just didn't notice.

I also found it sprinkled on another dish that night.....on the fried Kuruma prawn head!  It was like an umami bomb of flavours.  At that time, I didn't know what it was.

A few weeks later, this familiar condiment showed up in a sushi roll we ordered at Burger & Sushi that has been rolled in furikake for a tasty outer coating.  It was then that I enquired about this seasoning and was told that it's furikake.

We loved it so much that we asked for our sushi roll to be encrusted entirely with furikake the next time we had it again (forget about rolling it in ebiko, we said).

And as luck would have it, I was gifted a packet of furikake from Japan.  Judging from the pictures of what looks like salmon and shrimp, I guess that's the flavour of this furikake did have that fishy (but not in an unpleasant way) oceanic flavours.

Let me show you up close and personal the contents of this furikake...I can definitely see the nori and sesame seeds...and what I think are dried egg omelette pieces.  Now that I know what furikake tastes like, I can think of many ways to use this seasoning.

The simplest way would be sprinkled over plain rice (or sushi rice) where it turns a plain bowl of rice into something so delicious by giving it that savoury flavour boost.  One spoonful of the rice (flavoured with furikake) and you'd probably not want to eat rice ever again without it.

Or over egg-coated rice! ^_^  Just crack one egg (for one portion of rice) over steamed rice (when it's done), stir thoroughly and steam for a further 2 - 3 minutes (but if you're using a Japanese pasteurised egg, then all you have to do is stir it in).  You can do it in a rice cooker too by adding the eggs just when the rice is cooked and leave it in the rice cooker until you're ready to eat.

If you're trying to cut down on the amount of rice you eat, don't sprinkle furikake on top! ;P  It makes it so delicious, you'll end up eating a few more bowls of rice.  In the same context, it should work great with onigiri rice balls as well.

Sprinkle it on teriyaki chicken.

It's egg-cellent on top of a fried egg! ^.^

Or over instant noodles...dry-style.  

I even put it on soup noodles.  Should be great with soba noodles too.

Scattered over fried rice.

Try it with chilled tofu...drizzled with a little garlic oil and a few drops of sesame oil.  Very refreshing with the benefit of a savoury lift from the furikake...this is probably my favourite way of using the seasoning. ^o^

Sprinkled on blanched sugar snap peas, they're transformed from bland to tasty.  It should work just as well with edamame or, even simpler, sprinkle them on sliced Japanese cucumbers.

Other suggestions (from the internet)....use it on buttered popcorn, French fries, spaghetti, scrambled eggs, salads, roasted veggies, baked fish or even as a crust for seared tuna.

Just imagine the things you can use with this to amp up the flavours of anything you can think of.  But heed the warning: You might not be able to resist it once you've tried!

It's a staple in many Japanese restaurants everywhere...and it's now a staple in my home too...a little goes a long way.  Great with anything that you want to add an incredible amount of savoury umami flavours to. What a seasoning!  Time to restock. ^_~ 


  1. Endless uses! :-) . I know people who eat it on its own as a snack - much like a packet of potato crisps.

    1. Oh my...they do? Eating it on its own is a bit too savoury for me! ^_~

  2. i can imagine getting quite addicted to furikake if i had a packet at home. i'd drizzle it on every warm dish, and i'd be tempted to add it to dessert too ... furikake with chocolate? :D

    1. I know a few specks of sea salt do wonders to the chocolate...but with furikake? I think that may be taking it a bit too far...but you can be the first to try...hihihi! ;D

  3. I might have tasted Furikake before but I don't seem to remember it. I must keep my eyes wide open next time when I eat out hee..hee... I first learnt about Furikake in a cookbook which made a mention of it but no recipe given.

    1. I've seen quite a few recipes of homemade furikake online...perhaps you might want to give it a try...hehe! ;)

  4. I always keep some Furikake in my pantry for my girl, my self seldom eat it as just like what you've said, it will make you craving for more rice >_<

    1. Ah, I see your girl likes it too. Well, at least when she's fickle with her food, this will be the 'magic powder' that'll get her to eat more rice! ^_*

  5. LOLOL... I am learning from you today about this Furikake. I always call myself a nerd beside my wife. We do use a lot of Japanese seasoning at home and even carry their small bottle of chilly pepper shakes overseas because I am a chilly addict. I had seen this seasoning used by the chefs but had no idea it is called Furikake! I must hunt this when I go for grocery shopping.

    1. Ooo, when it's something I love to eat, I make an effort to find out what it is...haha! ;D I too need to hunt this to restock! ;)


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