It’s no secret that I’m a HUGE sushi fan! There’s something about the combination of fresh or cooked fish, sticky rice, and savory flavors that I can’t get enough of. Recently, I discovered a new twist on sushi that has become my latest obsession – crispy rice.
Last year, I made my own version of this crispy rice dish and I literally fell in love with it. The textures and flavors were so good- crispy, spicy, and packed with umami flavor in every bite. It was everything I love about sushi but in a fun way.
For those who haven’t tried it, crispy rice is a popular appetizer at Nobu, usually served with spicy tuna salad. But I decided to put my own spin on it and use shrimp instead.
If you’re a sushi fan like me, I highly recommend giving this crispy rice a try. And with endless variations and toppings to choose from, you can make it your own and experiment with different flavors and textures.
What is crispy rice?
Crispy rice is a rice cake cooked and seasoned with rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Line a baking dish with Syrian wrap then form the rice into a 1-inch square. After chilling it overnight, cut the rice into squares and shallow-fry on both sides until it’s golden and crispy. The key is to make sure the rice is packed together tightly, then use shallow oil to fry.
Top it with your favorite sushi toppings and enjoy!
I’ve made a few variations of crispy rice and it hits every time. The one thing I love about crispy rice is how much bigger it is compared to sushi! Which means more to enjoy! And we love that.
How to make spicy shrimp
Spicy shrimp is very easy to make. All you need is cooked shrimp, kewpie mayo, panko, Sriracha, sesame oil, green onions, and soy sauce. Mix everything together until well combined. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can add a little cajun seasoning for some extra pizzazz.
Feel free to use any fish with this combination. Tuna, shrimp, salmon. The options are endless.
For the rice cakes-
Sushi rice- the best rice to use is short grain ‘Japanese’ rice. It has a stickier texture
Rice vinegar- this is used to season the rice. I use the one from Kikkoman
sugar- adds sweetness to the rice and helps balance the vinegar flavor
salt- helps season the rice as well. If you get seasoned rice vinegar you won’t need to use salt or sugar as they are ingredients in rice vinegar
Shrimp- I chose to use imitation crab. Feel free to use shrimp, tuna or salmon
Mayo- I highly recommend a Japanese mayo like Kewpie. If you don’t have it, regular mayo will work
Green onions- thinly diced
Sriracha– use to your discretion. This is the Sriracha I used Roland Foods
Panko– this adds the perfect texture and crunch to the spicy shrimp
Soy Sauce– just a tad to season the mix
Toppings– choose your favorite sushi toppings.
Cucumber, optional but adds a brightness and
Nori Sheets, optional but I love to dress up my crispy rice with nori sheets.
Furikake- If you don’t have nori sheets, topping crispy rice with furikake is another great option. It’s a combination of sesame seeds, katsuobushi, green seaweed flakes, and nori seaweed. I get mine from Trader Joes
Eel Sauce- The perfect dipping sauce. I made my own with 3 simple ingredients
How to make eel sauce?
Eel sauce is a delicious and versatile condiment that adds a sweet and savory flavor to many dishes, especially sushi rolls. And the best part? It’s incredibly easy to make at home with just three simple ingredients: soy sauce, mirin, and brown sugar.
In a small saucepan, combine equal parts of the listed ingredients and cook over medium heat until the mixture thickens. Once it’s done, remove it from the heat and let it cool before serving..
If you try this, be sure to drop a comment and let me know your thoughts.
Spicy Salmon Crispy Rice
- 1 cup short grain rice
- 1 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup shrimp
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp white pepper
- 1/4 cup mayo
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1/4 cup green onions diced
- 2 tbsp panko
- 1-2 tbsp sriracha
- 1/2 avocado thinly sliced
- jalapeno thinly sliced
- toasted sesame seeds
- eel sauce
- Place rice in a colander, rinse rice until the water runs clear. Cook sushi rice according to the package. While the rice cooks, combine rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Mix until the salt and sugar dissolve.
- Transfer rice into a bowl, and pour the rice vinegar over the rice. mix well. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and form the rice into the pan making it about 1 inch thick. Cover and cool in the refrigerator overnight.
- Take the rice out the refrigerator and cut it into squares. Heat about 1/2 cup of oil and fry the rice cakes over medium heat. Cook for 4 minutes without moving before checking and flipping.
- Drain on a wire rack.
- For the spicy shrimp- season shrimp with garlic powder, onion powder and white pepper. Add oil to a skillet and sear shrimp until cooked, about 2 minutes each side. Remove from the pan and allow it to cook.
- Chop shrimp into small pieces, add to a bowl and combine with mayo, panko, sriracha, green onions and soy sauce. Mix until well combined. Season with cajun seasoning, if desired.
- Top the rice cakes with sliced avocado, spicy shrimp mix, jalapeno, and sriracha. Drizzle eel sauce and sprinkle with furikake or sesame seeds, if desired. Enjoy!
Did you make it?
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