For those of you who are not familiar with Spam Musubi, it is a traditional Hawaiian snack with a Japanese influence, that includes a slice of spam and a block of rice, and covered in a piece of nori (seaweed). The shape is created by using an acrylic mold which we bought at a local Japanese market. You can also find it online for a few dollars. This isn’t the first time we’ve posted about Spam Musubi; if you looked back at this post here dated January 26, 2009, we showed pictures of our friend making this at a party. What I just realized is that I spelled ‘musubi’ wrong and wrote ‘masubi.’ Needless to say, the wrong spelling of ‘spam masubi’ is one of our most-searched words on this blog. HAHA! I guess I’m not the only one who thought masubi is how you spell it!
Anyway, the reason why we wanted to share this recipe again is because we recently made it with the addition of tamago, which is a sweet egg omelette that provides another layer of flavor to the Spam Musubi. This is also traditionally done, but you don’t see this as often. We searched online for various ways to make tamago, and most of them require a tamago pan, which we didn’t have. We figured that if we tried to make it on a stove top, the bottom may get too dark and the center of the egg may not be cooked through. Alas, we decided to experiment by baking the egg in the oven and surprisingly it turned out pretty good. This additional post on Spam Musubi was necessary because we wanted to show more step-by-step photos of the process.
Because the Spam Musubi is wrapped in plastic to hold it’s shape, it’s definitely a great on-the-go snack. It’s also proved to be a very popular party food whenever our friend Cecille makes them. Try it out for yourself and you’ll know what we mean!
Since spam isn't the healthiest thing in the world, I used Lite Spam to make myself feel better about eating it. I cut it into 8 even slices (if you want it thinner and yield more, cut it into 10). I grilled it in a pan to brown both sides.
Next, remove the spam and place it on paper towels. In the same pan, combine 6 tbsp soy sauce, 4 tbsp mirin, and 4 tbsp sugar. Bring this liquid to a boil and reduce to low. Then return the spam slices back into the pan to coat them in the liquid. Once the liquid has thickened, remove the spam and set aside.
To make the tamago, mix together 4 large eggs, 1 tsp sugar, 1 tsp mirin, 1/2 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp bonito flakes, and 1 tsp chives in a greased loaf pan. Chives are optional - we just wanted to give the tamago some nice color. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 12-15 minutes until the egg is no longer runny.
The edges are cut off so that it looks smooth. Keep in mind that this loaf pan only made enough for 4 musubis, so you would have to make it twice. Also, it wasn't exactly the size of the spam, but it was close enough.
To assemble, start with a sheet of plastic wrap on your cutting board, then a thin sheet of nori. Next, place the acrylic mold down and place the tamago and slice of spam inside the mold and fill the rest with rice. The rice is basically Japanese rice mixed with sprinkles of Furikake. I also like to drizzle a little bit of the thickened sauce that the spam was cooked in on the rice for added flavor. Finally, press the rice down and carefully remove the mold. Wrap the nori sheet over the rice and secure it by wetting the edges of the nori. Wrap up the musubi with the plastic wrap underneath.
The end result is a delicious and tasty snack that needs no utensils! Our experiment with making the tamago in the oven was successful, but you can try other popular methods, like using a regular pan or the special tamago pan. You'll also notice that we didn't put too much rice in our musubis because it could get unpleasant to eat when you have a brick of rice with no flavor. We will continue to play around with making musubis at home and experiment with other ingredients and we'll be back to share more of this yummy savory treat.