Clarissa Johal: #MeatlessMonday - Umeboshi Onigiri (Japanese rice balls with salt-pickled plums) #vegetarian #vegan

Monday, March 26, 2018

#MeatlessMonday - Umeboshi Onigiri (Japanese rice balls with salt-pickled plums) #vegetarian #vegan

Umeboshi Onigiri

Yield: about 6 onigiri
I had these in Hawaii recently and fell in love with them. They are the ultimate grab and go food and super-easy to make. Umeboshi isn't for everyone, it has a strong salty-sour flavor (on the level of Sour Patch Kids) but if you like those flavor profiles, you'll be hooked! 

Read about umeboshi and its health benefits HERE.

Photo courtesy of alexxis vis Flickr

2 cups sushi rice

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

Umeboshi paste (this ingredient is usually much cheaper if you purchase it at your local Asian grocery store)

12 strips of dried seaweed/nori (See picture) You can purchase nori specifically for onigiri or cut the sheets into small or large strips, according to taste.)


1. Cook rinsed and drained rice in rice cooker according to instructions.

2. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine vinegar, sugar, and salt. Microwave for 20 to 30 seconds until sugar is dissolved.

3. Transfer warm rice to a glass dish and spread into a thin layer. Sprinkle with vinegar mixture and gently fold into the rice until evenly coated.

4. When the rice is cool enough to handle, form into a rice ball (about 1/3 cup of rice) or triangle around a small dab of umeboshi paste. (Have a bowl of water next to you to wet your hands. It will keep the rice from sticking!)

5. Wrap in nori and press lightly to adhere.

6. Serve immediately so seaweed remains crisp. Unwrapped onigiri can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Wrap in seaweed just before serving.


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