Although we’re mostly a road-trip family, we took the vacation of a lifetime a few years earlier and went to Hawaii with my family. It was magical. And while my kids came back with a love for palm trees and surfing, they also came back with a new appreciation for musubi. You can pick it up all over in Hawaii…at grocery stores, convenience stores…tons of places. And it’s so good. If you’re not familiar with musubi, I highly recommend you try it — just try it once — and see how you like it.
It is, in a nutshell, spam sushi. And it’s fabulous.
The beauty of musubi lies not only in its deliciously salty yumminess but also in the fact that it’s contained in this neat little seaweed wrapper. It’s great for picnics, or school lunches, or after-school snacks. And making musubi is an activity unto itself, which makes it a perfect dish to try on a day when kids take over the kitchen. They’ll have a blast.
You do need a musubi maker, which is relatively inexpensive. I bought one after our trip and I’ve used it countless times since then. But the rest of the ingredients you should be able to find in your local grocery store (some recipes call for furikake seasoning, and if you keep that on-hand, by all means use it. But I don’t, and I figure it’s better to make this without than not to make it at all.)
And you don’t have to use spam in the middle. You can substitute chopped chicken, or shredded pork, or even diced avocado for the spam — use up any leftovers you have and wrap it all up in this cute little seaweed bundle and enjoy!
How to make musubi
- 5 c cooked sushi rice (I tried using other rice, and you really do need the sushi rice because it holds together best)
- 1 package nori (seaweed sheets), cut in half lengthwise
- 1 can Spam
- 6 Tb soy sauce, plus extra sauce for dipping
- 3 Tb sugar
- In a small bowl, mix soy sauce and sugar together and set aside.
- Cut spam into 10 slices, and place in a frying pan over medium heat.
- After 2 minutes, add soy sauce mixture to the frying pan and continue cooking.
- Flip spam pieces and cook until the soy sauce mix carmelizes and coats the spam slices.
- Remove and set slices on a plate.
- Lay one piece of nori lengthwise and place your musubi maker in the middle. Fill about 1/4 full with sushi rice and tamp down.
- Add one slice of spam and another layer of rice and tamp down again. Remove the musubi maker and wrap the edges of the nori around your block of rice. You may need to moisten the edges slightly to get the seaweed to stick together.
That’s it! Repeat until your ingredients run out. If you’re using other meat or avocado, simply replace the spam in the middle with your meat and follow the rest of the instructions.
Serve with extra soy sauce for dipping. We also like to serve our musubi with pineapple and pretend we’re back in Hawaii. Sigh.
This post was originally written for BabyCenter. It is republished here with permisson.