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What Is Furikake Seasoning and How Is It Used?

What Is Furikake?

Furikake is powdered or minced seasoning side dish that mainly used by sprinkling on cooked rice.

It often refers to something similar to pre-made products rather than cooking at meal time.

There are a wide variety of commercial products that have been commercialized.

What Is Furikake Made of?

Most of furikake contain nori (seaweed laver) and sesame as main ingredients. Recently, freeze-dried ingredients are sometimes used because they have a rich flavor.

For the raw furikake, dried young sardines, hijiki, wakame seaweed, and kombu are often used.

How Do You Eat Furikake?

Put on rice / Mix with rice

This is the most common way to enjoy furikake in Japan. When eating rice in a bowl, we sprinkle furikake on top of the rice. On the other hand, we mix furikake with the rice in advance when making rice balls.

Put on yakisoba (stir-fried noodles with meat and vegetables)

As you may know, aonori flakes (dried seaweed) are very popular topping for yakisoba. Furikake can be substitute for this aonori flakes. Actually, the furikake for yakisoba often contains aonori flakes.

Put on pasta (spaghetti)

Although this is less common than the above, it’s still great way to taste furikake. For example, cod roe furikake can be good substitute for real cod roe when making cod roe pasta. Moreover, furikake made from dried young sardines, sesame and green vegetables can be the best material when making Japanese-style pasta.

What Are the Different Types of Furikake?

There are 4 major types of furikake in Japan.

Ordinary furikake that is used for putting on rice

As I mentioned earlier, this is the standard product when it comes to furikake.
There are so many kinds of furikake. I would like to list some examples here.

Examples
・Nori + Egg
・Sukiyaki
・Salmon
・Bonito shavings with soy sauce
・Shiso plum

Furikake that is exclusively for making onigiri (rice ball)

Ordinary furikake above certainly can be used for rice balls. However, there are various furikake exclusively for making rice balls. The furikake for rice balls often contains wakame seaweed as a main ingredient. In addition to that, it contains various ingredients, for example:

Examples
・Wakame + Green vegetable
・Wakame + Salmon
・Wakame + Dried young sardine

By the way, the reason why (1) and (2) contain slightly different materials is that both of them are made according to the timing of eating.

In other words, (1) is delicious with crunchy texture when it’s just sprinkled on rice. On the other hand, (2) is assuming that you don’t eat right away. Wakame seaweed will be re-hydrated over time, and become nice and delicious when eating.

Furikake that is exclusively for making ochazuke (boiled rice soaked with tea)

To make ochazuke, you put your favorite ingredients on top of the rice, after that pour hot water or tea.
There is very useful furikake exclusively for this meal which is kind of like instant ochazuke.

The flavor is unique and very delicious. Moreover, it turns green when hot water is added. So, you don’t have to use real green tea.

Furikake comes with cup noodles

Some instant noodles and cup noodles are served with a small packet of furikake. For instance, yakisoba (stir-fried noodles) and hiyashi-chuka (cold ramen salad) are often sold with the furikake.

This special furikake often contains aonori flakes (dried seaweed) and sesame. Therefore, it gives great flavor to the noodles and upgrade the taste very well!

Which Furikake Is Best?

16 Best Furikake Rice Seasonings in Japan

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