Homemade Furikake

by Tokyo Terrace on June 18, 2013

Homemade Furikake + Rice

I’m a condiment person. Dips, salsas, sauces…you name it, I probably love it. When I was a kid, it was not difficult to find me at parties because I was most likely lurking near the chips and dip. OK, let’s be honest…that’s usually where you’ll find me as a grown-up, too. Chips and fries are just vehicles for salsa and ketchup, right?

When we lived in Japan, I got hooked on furikake, a combination of sesame seeds, nori, and other seasonings that is sprinkled on rice and other foods for added flavor. For the first 3 years of life in Tokyo, I used furikake liberally. Then, I got pregnant with Riley and like many first-time mothers I obsessively read every ingredient label on everything I put into my body. When I saw MSG as one of the main ingredients in furikake, it immediately exited my list of pregnancy-friendly foods.

Recipe for Homemade Furikake

This was difficult. Mostly because I was craving Japanese sticky rice like no one’s business and all I wanted to do was put some salty, crunchy, umami-flavored furikake on top. The thought of making my own crossed my mind, but I was pretty busy growing a human being and didn’t have the energy to think about making something that I was sure would be equally as difficult. I had visions in my mind of drying salmon skin in the oven and other “complicated” steps that must go into making such a flavorful mixture. Turns out, furikake is not at all difficult to make.

Homemade Furikake

Here’s the basic recipe that I’ve found to work quite well (no MSG included). If you’re not a fan of fish flakes, you can omit them, although I highly recommend you at least try it with the flakes before tossing them out the window. They add such a lovely, smokey note that can only be found in these immensely flavorful flakes can lend. Once you have the basic recipe down, experiment with other flavor combinations. I’m working on a wasabi version right now, but you can do almost anything from classic sesame to matcha (think of a dish with a flavor profile like toasted rice in matcha broth) to a simple sesame salt, or gomashio.

Homemade Furikake Recipe

I love using furikake on popcorn, hard boiled eggs, in salads, and of course sprinkled over steaming hot rice. You could even keep a little ziploc bag of the stuff in your office drawer to spice up some noodles or other bland workday lunch that needs a pick-me-up.

No MSG. No hard work. Big rewards. Can’t get much better than that, can it?

Homemade Furikake

  • 1/3 cup nori sheets, broken up into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup white or black sesame seeds
  • 1 cup loosely packed bonito flakes (fish flakes), broken up into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon mirin
  • 2 or 3 drops toasted sesame oil

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.
In a small bowl, combine the sesame seeds and bonito flakes. Add the soy sauce and mirin and stir to evenly coat the sesame seed mixture. Add the nori and stir to combine.

Spread the mixture in and even layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the mixture is dry and slightly toasted. Keep an eye on it while it cooks to make sure it doesn’t burn.

Let the furikake cool for about 2 hours before transferring to an air-tight container. Store at room temperature for up to 2-3 weeks. If it lasts that long.

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  • http://www.quarterlifecrisiscuisine.com/ Ashley Bee

    Ohh it does look like it’d be fantastic in popcorn!

  • http://www.vodkitchen.com Jon @ vodkitchen

    Looks great! I love Japanese rice toppings and will definitely try this. Also reminds me I need to go back to Japan!

  • http://www.wander-crush.com/ Irina @ wandercrush

    Furikake is like sprinkling instant umami goodness onto anything! I used to love eating it over rice porridge whenever I was sick as a kid. High five to a fellow condiment junkie :)

  • http://this-is-irene.blogspot.com/ Irene { a swoonful of sugar}

    This is such a a great idea making furikake yourself, it’s kinda like granola, you can get as creative as you want with them, I love that!

  • kaname650

    Furikake popcorn is the best!!! It’s hard to eat popcorn with butter and salt after you have had furikake popcorn.

  • http://avocadopesto.com/ AvocadoPesto

    I’ve never even heard of this before but the combination of the ingredients alone leads me to believe it must be delicious! Next time I have an oven (no oven in the apt Im renting in Malaysia) I’ll be making this for sure : )

  • Elizabeth@thebackyardlemontree

    Looks great, Did you have any luck developing a wasabi version. My son is addicted to a commercial wasabi furiake but I wasn’t sure how incorporate it into a homemade mix.

  • Ratna Shakya

    Bonito flakes are generally unavailable in South Asia. I may experiment with adding fish sauce (Thai: Nam Pla) to the soy sauce to get some of the right effect.

  • paizley

    If you can find dried anchovies or other small fish, that will work as well as tiny dried shrimp.

  • paizley

    I grew up in a Japanese household. I came up with a mixed furikake using wasabi that’s delicious. Had to ponder how to get the wasabi flavor right. You can’t just use wasabi powder added because it won’t have the the “bite.”

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