Spam musubi is a popular snack in Hawaii and is very much an integral part of the islands’ food culture. Traditionally, this sushi-style treat is made with a slice of Spam grilled in a sweet soy sauce mixture and placed on top of short-grain rice packed into rectangular blocks. The rice and Spam are then wrapped with nori seaweed for portability. It is also common to flavor the rice with furikake or sesame seeds and to add scrambled eggs or pickled vegetables as variations.
As I didn’t have a musubi press mold to conveniently shape my rice, I used the Spam can by cutting off its top and bottom. Worked like a charm. You can also easily shape the rice by hand, just lightly wet hands with water and sprinkle hands with salt in between shaping to keep the rice from sticking. Give Spam Musubi a try, the kids will surely devour them!
- 3 cups short grain rice
- 3 cups water
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 (12 ounces) can Spam, cut crosswise into 10 slices
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- ½ cup sugar
- 5 sheets Nori seaweed, cut lengthwise into two
- Rinse rice two to three times and drain well. In a rice cooker, combine rice and water. Soak for about 30 minutes and then turn on rice cooker to cook rice.
- In a bowl, combine soy sauce and sugar and stir until sugar is dissolved. Set aside.
- In a pan over medium heat, heat oil. Add Spam slices in a single layer and cook, turning once or twice, for about 1 to 2 minutes on each side or until slightly crisp. Add soy sauce-sugar mixture and continue to cook, turning Spam slices once or twice, until liquid is fully absorbed. Remove from pan.
- Lay nori seaweed shiny side down on a flat working surface. Place musubi press in the center of the seaweed. Spoon about ⅔ cup of cooked rice into mold. Press down rice to pack tightly into about 1-inch thick. Pull up mold to release rice block.
- Place a grilled Spam slice on top of block of rice. Fold one end of the seaweed over and tuck between the Spam and rice and then fold the other side of the seaweed over wrap around the rice and Spam. Moisten edge of seaweed to seal.