Sunday, June 19, 2011

Musubi - or the perfect pocket food

The other morning while we were wandering through the Hollywood Farmer's Market we sampled a teriyaki chicken and egg musubi from the Hawaiian restaurant Ate Oh Ate. It was a delicious block of rice, egg, and flavorful chicken all rolled up in seaweed. Traditionally, it usually has Spam too, but I was happy to sample the roll without it. Spam just doesn't appeal to me, no matter how many people tell me it is really good.

This isn't raw, but looks this way in the picture!
(Side story: One of my Korean students spent a week convincing me to make Spam and kim chi stew, he even hand wrote a recipe, translated from his Korean grandma. I just couldn't do it. I used a pork chop instead, and brought him a little to try. I was informed it wasn't as good as it could be, but not bad for a teacher. High praise from a 5th grader!)
The next day Justin and I decided we needed more musubi. We have trying to take more hikes and get out of the house with the baby. These little rolls, packed with protein and rice, were a perfect lunch we could throw in our bag. We made a bunch Sunday evening and they were delicious through Wednesday. After reading up on musubi, turns out they are Hawaii's perfect snack food. Surfers and swimmers could tuck this in their bag and head out to a day of fun.

The hardest part of these is making the block of egg. I scrambled up 4 eggs, heated a small frying pan over low and sorta scrambled, sorta swirled the eggs until 1/2 way set. Then I put a lid over the pan and let it cook until solid. This made a nice block of egg that was easy to slice.

We used leftover boneless, skinless chicken thighs which we tossed with a little teriyaki sauce. Next time you are grilling throw a few extra thighs on and roll these up after dinner. You will have snack food for your summer adventures ready to go. (I am thinking of YOU, Mrs. Larson and your mountain biking boys.)

This is the seaweed I found at Fred Meyers
 The Japanese short grain sushi rice (which sticks together) and seaweed can be found at most grocery stores, so no need to hunt down a specialty store.

 The amount you will end up with varies on how full you pack your rolls.
Chicken and Egg Musubi
2 cups sushi rice, cooked (to make about 4 cups), slightly cooled
10 sheets of seaweed, cut in half
4-5 chicken thighs, sliced
1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
4 eggs
pinch of salt
pinch of sugar
cooking spray

1. Start with the eggs. Break the eggs into a bowl and whisk in a pinch of salt and sugar. Heat a small frying pan over low heat. Spray pan with the cooking spray and pour in the eggs. Using a spatula slowly swirl the eggs for about a minute, or until they begin to set. Put a lid on the pan. Cook 3 minutes. Swirl the eggs again if still loose. Repeat until the eggs are set.
2. In a bowl, toss sliced chicken with teriyaki sauce.
3. When eggs are set, slide onto a cutting board (or scrape them out, which often happens to me) and slice into 1/2 inch thick strips.
4. Lay a piece of seaweed on a cutting board.
5. With wet hands grab a handful of rice and smooch it gently onto the seaweed. Leave about an inch without rice at one end.
6. Lay a few pieces of chicken and one or two slices of egg length wise across the rice.
7. Roll seaweed around the filling toward the end with no rice. It should seal itself. If it doesn't, dip your finger into a little water and run it over the open end.

These store really well in a tupperware or individually wrapped in plastic if they are going in your pocket.


  1. Such yummy little treats!

    My mother is Okinawan, so I grew up eating Spam--she did all kinds of things with it. It was so much fun for me in Kauai last year to eat it "Hawaiian style." You could make dishes where it's chopped really small, so it's more like bacon--like fried rice or my mother makes cabbage/carrot tempura with little chunks of Spam.

  2. Looks great! It's definitely a good option hiking. It's difficult to find super convenient/easy/nutritious foods for hiking, aside from the typical nuts/fruit/cheese/etc.

  3. this looks great! chicken teriyaki with anything is so good and i especially love the addition of eggs! :)