Hello! My name is Satoru. The manager of “Omusubi Kyusan” rice ball shop and Director of Food and Beverage Business for Satsubei Co. Ltd. Today I would like to introduce Omusubi (rice ball) DIY kit. Please enjoy!
■Delicious rice from Hokkaido!
Recently, many Japanese people says rice balls served in Hokkaido are the most delicious in the world. The reason is , the deliciousness of Hokkaido rice is being acknowledged country-wide, with the recent repeated winnings of “Special A” grade, which is the top grade for rice every year, in rice taste rankings by Hokkaido’s “Nanatsuboshi” and “Yumepirika” breeds. The most popular ingredients of rice ball is salted salmon, which was fished and processed in Hokkaido. “Ikura” salmon roe and “Tarako” cod roe, follows, both of them produced in Hokkaido. Nowadays, many people visit Hokkaido to eat rice ball, not only from various places in Japan but also from overseas.
For Japanese people, the one’s best rice ball is the one made by his/her mother, and the second best rice ball is the one made by “Omusubi Kyusan” rice ball shop in Hokkaido, which is a capital of Hokkaido. Kawahara, the store manager of “Omusubi Kyusan”. Kawahara has served more than 1 million pieces of rice balls in many places in the world such as America, Europe and Asia as well as Japan, for promotion of rice ball culture and Hokkaido rice, while facing rice every day at “Satsubei”, a long-established rice shop which has nearly 100 years’ history.
“OMUSUBI KIT” (rice ball kit), which allows you to enjoy Kawahara’s rice balls even in overseas, is now available for purchase. Let’s get “OMUSUBI KIT” and be a “Rice Ball Player”!
Characteristics of “Yumepirika”, a Hokkaido rice breed are well-balanced stickiness, sweetness, and gloss and beauty when cooked. Tasting test conducted Sapporo and Tokyo metropolitan area revealed high evaluation by wide generations and selected as No.1 Hokkaido brand rice.
On the other hand, the salmon flake enclosed in the kit, Ajiomoi Hyakumori Sake Flake” is flaked salmon with lightly-salted mild taste, made of salmon born in clean rivers of Hokkaido and grew up in the Okhotsk, neighboring water of Shiretoko of Hokkaido. It is highly recommended for Omusubi, as well as salad and/or pasta. No artificial coloring or artificial synthetic preservatives are added.
■Let try to make a delicious Omusubi by yourself!
First, you will need to prepare rice. Let’s try to cook delicious rice with us!
・Material: Rice: 360ml (2 “gou”) （for 6pcs of Omusubi (Rice Balls)
・Tools： a strainer, a bowl, a measuring cup, a rice cooker or pot
Step1: Sharpen (wash) the rice !!
① Accurately measure the quantity of rice.
A cup-full of “1 gou cup” (180ml) rice weights 150g. Scoop the rice with the cup, and remove the excessive rice by sliding your finger across the opening of the cup. As the excessive/shortage of rice as small as 10g may make the difference of taste when cooked, so please measure the quantity of rice accurately. Use a scale to accurately measure the quantity of rice, by unit of 150g (1 “gou”).
② Quickly wash the rice 3 times
A combination of strainer and bowl makes it easy to wash the rice. Place a strainer in a bowl, and pour water swiftly from high place – drain the water when the bowl get full. Repeat this process 3 times. As rice absorbs water the most during its first contact with water, quickly drain the water in a bowl.
③ Wash lightly twice
Japanese rice, which are prepared with advanced polishing technology, may get damaged if you wash it with too much power. Gently moving your palm in circle, wash the rice twice.
④ Water absorption
Warmer water takes less time for absorption. Thus, immerse the rice in water for 40 min in summer but for 1 hour in winter for absorption. When finished, move the rice to strainer and drain the water.
Step2A: Cooking the rice (with rice cooker device)!!
① Move the washed rice to the pot of rice cooker.
Pour 180ml of water per the same amount of rice (1 “gou”). Rice cooker’s inner scale shows appropriate amount of water for the rice before water absorption, but our rice has already absorbed water. So do not use that scale, and instead measure the quantity of water before pouring it to the rice cooker’s pot. When you cook 2 “gou” of rice, please pour 360ml of water. 540ml of water if you cook 3 “gou” of rice.
② Turn the switch of the rice cooker and wait.
If your rice cooker is pre-programed including necessary time for water absorption, select rapid cooking mode.
When your rice cooker’s alarm goes off and it changes is mode from cooking to keep-warm mode, open the rid and stir the rice from the bottom, and let the excessive water vapor go out of the rice cooker.
Step2B: Cooking the Rice (with Pot)!!
① Move the washed rice to a pot
Pour 180ml of water per the same amount of rice (1 “gou”). Measure the quantity of water before pouring it to the pot. When you cook 2 “gou” of rice, please pour 360ml of water. 540ml of water if you cook 3 “gou” of rice.
② Close the rid and heat over medium heat
Cook with transparent lid which allows you to look into the rice, and cook it over medium heat (for approx. 10 minutes, until it start to boil) and reduce the heat to low when it start forming bubbles. In case if you are cooking with non-transparent lid, it is acceptable to open a lid and quickly check the status.
③ Cook over low heat
Cook for 12 to 13 minutes over low heat, until all the bubbles and water disappears.
Cook over high heat for 10 seconds to remove excessive water. Turn off the heat and wait for 10 seconds for steaming and then gently stir the rice to finish.
Ok, finally, let’s try to make Omusubi!!
Step1: Leave the cooked rice for a while for making Omusubi.
Step2: Put approx. 100g of rice on top of your palm, and gently make a ball. Make a pit in the center of the rice ball.
Step3: Put the ingredient in the pit and close it with surrounding rice.
Step4: Shape it with your one hand, while form thickness with your other hand.
Step5: Rotate the rice ball to shape it to triangle.
Step6: Put the rice ball on a sheet of salted dried seaweed to finish.
How was it? Did you make a perfect triangle one? Hahaha, it might be not easy for the first time, but it was fun wasn’t it? You can enjoy making Omusubi with your kids, friends or lovers!
I hope you all will enjoy this kit!
WASHOKU Sensei：Satoru Kawahara
Store Manager of “Omusubi Kyusan” rice ball shop and Director of Food and Beverage Business for Satsubei Co. Ltd.
As a rice cooking consultant for many restaurants including sushi bars and major hotels in Hokkaido, Kawahara provides wide range of support such as selecting rice breed variety, rice cooking techniques, menu development and so on. He also launched rice ball shop “Omusubi Kyusan” 10 years ago, and while serving rice balls a the shop, he named himself as “Rice Ball Player” and demonstrates rice ball making and in Hokkaido Food Fairs held in many different places in Japan. Recently he extended his activities to overseas, and working hard to promote rice ball, which is “the best Japanese food”, and Hokkaido rice.