Furikake (振り掛け / ふりかけ) is a dry Japanese seasoning meant to be sprinkled on top of cooked rice, vegetables, and fish. It typically consists of a mixture of dried fish, sesame seeds, chopped seaweed, sugar, salt, and monosodium glutamate.
Other flavorful ingredients such as katsuobushi (sometimes indicated on the package as bonito), or okaka (bonito flakes moistened with soy sauce and dried again), freeze-dried salmon particles, shiso, egg, powdered miso, vegetables, etc., are often added to the mix.
Furikake is often brightly colored and flaky. It can have a slight fish or seafood flavoring and is sometimes spicy. It can be used in Japanese cooking for pickling foods and for rice balls (onigiri). Since 2003, furikake has increasingly gained acceptance in the US (particularly in Hawaii and the West Coast) as a seasoning for baked or fried fish,raw fish salads and snack foods such as furikake party mix. (Wikipedia)
As a unique type of Japanese seasoning furikake comes in a wide range of flavours, including wasabi furikake (with dried wasabi as a main ingredient), nori komi furikake (containing tiny pieces of seasoned nori seaweed), shiso furikake (made from seasoned, dried, and crushed red perilla leaves), and salmon furikake (with dried salmon crumbs). Furikake may also contain dried omelette pieces, roasted sesame seeds, bonito fish flakes, and even matcha green tea on occasion. (Japan Centre)
HOW DO YOU WANT TO USE IT?
(by Japan Centre)
For Bento Lunch Box
Furikake rice seasoning is also a common feature in a bento lunch box, either already sprinkled onto the bed of rice that makes up a large part of most bento lunches, or kept in a separate little furikake shaker for the bento eater to sprinkle on themselves.
On Hot Rice
Rice seasoning furikake is versatile, and furikake recipes such as furikake chex mix and furikake salmon are becoming increasingly popular not just with Japanese cooks, but among cooking enthusiasts all over the world.
In Sushi Rolls and Onigiri
Furikake can also be used to flavour rice-based snacks such as sushi rolls and onigiri rice balls. Try mixing furikake into plain rice or sushi rice, then making your sushi rolls or onigiri rice balls as normal. Alternatively, when you have finished shaping your rice-based snack, roll it in furikake for a tasty savoury outer coating.
As Pasta Garnish
Rice is not the only food staple that can benefit from a touch of furikake. Try sprinkling a little salmon or nori tamago furikake on freshly cooked pasta. Like Japonica rice, pasta is slightly sticky, especially when freshly cooked, so the furikake will stick to it and make a serving of plain pasta into a great-tasting snack or light meal.
Instead of just adding salt or butter to popcorn, why not try something a little different and flavour your popcorn with furikake? Simply open up a bag of freshly microwaved popcorn, shake in your desired amount of furikake, close the bag back up, and shake well to mix the furikake in.
Sprinkled on Rice
The word ‘furikake’ literally means ‘sprinkle over’. As such, the most well-known and accepted way of using furikake is to tear open a sachet and sprinkle it over a serving of rice, whether that be hot, steamed rice fresh from the rice cooker/saucepan, cold rice from the night before, or rice that is going into a bento box for lunch.