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    rice balls )

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Jackfruit and Blue Ginger

Jackfruit and Blue Ginger

By Sasha Gill

Published 2019

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These stuffed rice pyramids are the perfect thing for a packed lunch, and my version has a zesty teriyaki-drenched filling. If you’re planning to eat these later, pack the nori separately and use it to wrap the onigiri just before you eat them. Otherwise, the nori will get soggy from being nestled up against the rice for too long.

Use tamari instead of soy sauce.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes


  • ½ cup (105 g) sushi rice
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 teaspoons white sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
  • 1 sheet nori


  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 cup (60 g) sliced fresh shiitake mushrooms
  • ¼ cup (40 g) frozen edamame
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon agave syrup
  • 1 teaspoon yuzu juice (or orange juice)
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour


Rinse and drain the rice. Continue to do this until the water runs clear – this usually takes 5–7 thorough rinses. Tip the rice and 2/3 cup (170 ml) water into a saucepan that has a tight-fitting lid and add the salt. Bring to the boil over high heat, stirring constantly, then turn down the heat as low as possible, clamp the lid on the pan and let the rice cook undisturbed for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave the rice to sit for 10 minutes, without lifting the lid.

Now take the lid off the rice and stir it around with a rice paddle or wooden spatula. Use a paper fan, or a book, to fan the rice and cool it down more quickly, gradually sprinkling in the sesame seeds and stirring to mix well. Go gently so as not to break up the rice too much.

To make the filling, heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Fry the garlic for a minute until fragrant, then add the mushrooms and let them cook, without stirring, until they shrink to about a third of their original size. Add the edamame to the pan, as well as the soy sauce, agave and yuzu. In a small bowl, mix the cornflour with 1 tablespoon water until no lumps remain, then pour into the pan. Quickly stir it in and cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens. Leave the filling to cool.

To help with shaping the rice balls, tear off a large sheet of plastic wrap. With the wrap laid over the palm of your hand, scoop about a sixth of the rice into it. Use your other hand to flatten the rice into a circle, then form a dip in the centre of the rice by curving your palm to create a bowl-like shape. Scoop in some of the filling, then add another sixth of the rice on top, covering the filling completely. Fold the plastic wrap up and around it and shape the rice ball into a pyramid. Repeat to form the other two onigiri.

Cut strips of nori and wrap around the base of each onigiri – this helps you hold them as you eat, as the rice is sticky!