Spam Musubi Recipe

Disclaimer:  I’m not sure what the proper format is for recipes.  So please excuse my format, if ever it’s wrong. I also didn’t follow the recipe that I found online, as I have found the recipe below better for my taste. But I will let you be the judge of that. 

SPAM MUSUBI RECIPE
by Ainee Litherland

Materials / Equipment:

  • 1 Rice cooker
  • 1 Frying pan
  • 1 Spam Musubi mold / maker (you can buy this online at websites such as Amazon, eBay, or any oriental store or regular store that would have this nearby. I got mine from Amazon).  Or, you may also use the can itself to shape the rice. But I think that is dangerous as the can might cut you.  I wouldn’t suggest using the empty Spam can because I’ve never even tried it myself.)
  • 1 Plate / Tray with paper towel to absorb the oil / grease from fried Spam
  • 1 Small plate / small bowl for the sweet soy sauce
  • 2 Small sauce dish for the rice vinegar and sesame oil; 2 separate sauce dishes
  • 1 Brush that you would normally use on your barbecue; but you can also use spoon instead.
  • 1 Pair of Gloves (optional – but will be good to have for sanitary reasons)
  • 1.35 yards of Cling Wrap (optional – each Spam Musubi will need about 6” x 6” to wrap it all around.  You can be more generous in the wrapping if you have more than enough. You don’t need the cling wrap if you plan to just eat them right away. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of Spam (regular flavor – doesn’t matter if with sodium or with less sodium); you can replace this ingredient with any luncheon meat brand you can find.  I wouldn’t suggest getting the ones with added flavor as it might change the flavor.
  • 3 cups of uncooked short grain / medium grain rice / Japanese rice (it will turn into 6 cups of cooked rice)
  • ¼ cup sweet soy sauce (you don’t really have to measure this but just in case you need at least this much. But I would suggest to just keep it in the bottle for now until you’re about to use it) You may place this in a small plate or bowl. 
  • 5 tablespoons rice vinegar (add more if needed)
  • 3 tablespoons sesame oil (add more if needed)
  • 1 pack of roasted seaweed (you will only really need about 3 sheets; each pack has about 10 sheets)
  • ½ cup cooking oil (I used vegetable oil.  But I think you can use canola oil, or any oil that you use for frying)

Preparations:

  • Rice:   Wash the rice.  Wash it several times until the water is almost all clear.  Rubbing the rice together would be good too. I heard it makes the rice stickier.  Not sure if it’s true.
  • Spam:  Slice the Spam into about 7 to 8 pieces. About half an inch or 1/3 inch thick. Making it too thin might make the Spam tastes too dry after frying.  A can of Spam should provide you about 7 to 8 slices. 
  • Seaweed:  Cut 1 sheet of roasted seaweed into 3 equal parts. You can use a pair of clean kitchen scissors.  When cutting making sure you have the seaweed horizontal, having the longest sides of the seaweed on the top and bottom when cutting.
  • Sweet Soy Sauce:  prepare the small plate that you will use to dip the cooked Spam for before placing it on top of the rice.
  • Rice vinegar:  pour a bit of rice vinegar in a small sauce dish or bowl
  • Sesame oil: pour a bit of sesame oil in a small sauce dish or bowl

Instructions:

Rice

  • Steam rice / cook rice using the rice cooker and keep it warm. 
  • Once cooked you can place it aside until you are ready to mold it.  It would be best to keep it warm to help with molding the rice.

Spam Musubi

  • Fry the Spam in high heat.  This is important so that you can have a crunchy crusty exterior, while a nice soft moist inside. 
    • Fry one side for about 3 to 4 minutes or until the color changes to a darker color / brown color.  It curls up sometimes, so that could be your queue to flip it to the other side. 
    • Flip to fry the other side.  It should be less than 3 minutes for the other side as most of it are cooked, you just need to even out the color.  Be careful not to make it too dark because the Spam will actually be darker once you take it out of the frying pan.
    • Place the cooked Spam on the plate with the paper towel.  Please try to remove the thinner ones first to ensure that they don’t overcook.  You may need to let some of the Spam to cook longer if they are thicker. 
  • Mold the rice using the Spam Musubi mold / maker.  Scoop about 3 tablespoons of rice to fill about 1/3 or half of the mold.  Use the presser to push all the rice at the bottom and mold the rice in the process. You may need to gauge how much rice you want as this will either make your musubi too thin or too thick.  This is important as you want to have enough rice for all your Spam.  Unless you have eaten one of them while cooking before you were able to make the musubi, then you will have enough rice then.
    • Make about 7 to 8 rice molds or just match the number of cooked Spam that you have.  You can choose to create 1 mold first then complete a Spam Musubi by moving on the to the next steps before creating all the molds. Then just come back to this step again.
  • Add a drop worth of sesame oil on top of the molded rice.  You can use the brush or dropper.  I sometimes use chopsticks as dropper by dipping in a chopstick in a bowl or bottle and then have the chopstick over the rice to drip over.  Or you can just tip over the bottle, but just hard to control how much you place on the rice.  The sesame oil just adds a bit to the aroma and a bit of flavor.  But too much of this can be overpowering.  So I’d like to emphasize how important to just put a drop or just lightly brush over on top.  Yes, just the top because if you brush it on the side, then the seaweed may not stick on the rice on the side if you put sesame oil on it. The top part will be covered with cooked Spam so you won’t have to worry about the not sticking part on this case.
  • Lightly brush rice vinegar over the rice.  If you use a spoon on this just add a drop or 2 on the rice or you can use your hand to lightly pat rice vinegar around the rice. 
  • Dip the cooked Spam in the sweet soy sauce – make sure it’s covered all over and dripping with the sauce, then place the cooked Spam on the molded rice.
  • Use the pre-cut roasted seaweed to wrap the Spam and rice.  The best way to wrap it is if you place the middle part of the seaweed on top of the Spam instead of on top of the rice. Then, seal it by dabbing a bit of rice vinegar using the brush or the tips of your fingers.  You may also use the rice vinegar on the top or side of the musubi, if the seaweed doesn’t stick to it right away.  You may stop here if you prefer to serve your Spam Musubi without cling wrap. That’s it, you’re all done!
  • Optional (Wrap the Spam Musubi with cling wrap – then, you’re really all done.  

Best eaten when shared with your loved ones!
I hope this recipe helps you. 
I hope to see photos of your Spam Musubi soon.
Good luck and happy eating!

Congee, My Comfort Food

Whenever I don’t feel good, I usually prefer to eat rice congee, also called as rice porridge, or lugaw in Filipino.

rice congee topped with rousong (dried pork floss) and soy sauce

Rice congee is my comfort food. I know most people would say chicken soup is best to eat when you are not . I prefer it over chicken soup. Come to think of it, chicken soup is not even on my top 3 food that I eat when I’m not feeling well.

I felt like I was coming down with something and I didn’t have any appetite to eat anything. So I had asked Chris to make me some congee. I always find myself eating congee when I can’t eat anything else.

Congee is good because it’s a clean food when it comes to how simple the ingredients are: rice and water. It can’t get any simpler than that. What you add to it are based on preference and there are a lot to choose from. Even I have so many different preferences when it comes to my rice congee.

There are many different types of congee and/or rice porridge. This one is just a simple congee.

The rice was boiled with 3 parts water ratio compared to the rice. So with 1 cup of uncooked rice boiled with 3 cups of water. No salt added or any seasoning when it was cooked. You can add chicken bouillon and ginger too. But with this one in the picture, the congee was made simple. Once it’s cooked, then that’s when I add seasoning. My go to seasoning and toppings for my congee is soy sauce and the Chinese dried pork floss, also called rousong. I sometimes like adding century egg too. Sometimes you can also add a bit of lime juice, a sprinkle of onion chives, and dab of fish sauce. You can always switch between soy sauce and fish sauce. But if you don’t like the color on your congee, you can always use salt.

ASL 05.13.2020 (Clearwater, FL)

Spam Musubi – Novice Level

I made spam musubi for Chris’s bento box.

This is actually not the first time we made spam musubi. Chris has made this for me a couple of time. But this is the first time I made it on my own. I had to improvised as I used the snack size seaweed for this, instead of cutting the big one to several lengthwise seaweeds. Even though I have a pack of full sheet sushi nori / seaweed, I want to save it for when we make sushi. The oriental store that we normally go to is temporarily closed due to this pandemic. That’s why I want to be very frugal with my ingredients without jeopardizing the flavor. However, I did see that I can buy sushi nori at Amazon. You can buy almost everything from Amazon! LOL

These were delicious! Not bad for a novice.

I wish the beaches were open and that the pandemic is over. As these are great to have for a beach picnic.