© Matthew Hranek
Rice Balls Rolled in Seaweed
- SERVINGS: MAKES 32 BALLS
Hisachika Takahashi has eaten just about every delicacy imaginable, but ask him what his favorite food is and he will inevitably say white rice.
- 2 cups Japanese sushi-style rice
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon powdered sushi flavoring
- 1 cup white vinegar mixed with 1 cup water
- 4 sheets nori (seaweed), cut into 4-by-1-inch strips
- Japanese sesame salt
- In a large bowl, rinse the rice in several changes of cold water until the water is thoroughly clear. In a medium saucepan, combine the rice with the 2 1/2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until all of the water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Remove the rice from the heat and let stand, covered, for 15 minutes.
- Transfer the warm rice to a bowl and stir in the sushi flavoring. Let the rice cool to room temperature.
- Moisten your hands in the vinegar mixture and roll rounded tablespoons of the rice into balls, moistening with the vinegar mixture as you roll. Mash a few grains of rice onto one short edge of a nori strip; wrap the nori around a rice ball, using the mashed rice to seal the edges. Repeat to form the remaining balls. Sprinkle the balls with the sesame salt; serve.
Make Ahead The rice balls can stand covered at room temperature for up to 3 hours.