Have you ever had this experience: Someone introduces you to something new, something amazing that apparently has existed forever without you knowing about it, and pretty soon you’re obsessed with this thing and you wonder, “How did I not know about this? Where in the world have I been?”. Such is my experience in regards to a wondrous and crunchy Japanese topping (garnish? condiment? magic fairy dust?) called Furikake.
I first read about furikake (pronounced, at least by me, as “furry-cocky”) in an issue of the food magazine Lucky Peach. It’s a seasoning (like salt and pepper but better) meant to be sprinkled over rice, but is in fact, complimentary with so many things.Â Lucky Peach introduced me to the idea of sprinkling furikake on freshly-popped, buttered popcorn (my new favorite movie-night snack), but I’m continuing to experiment with what I can add it to,Â like my recent lunch of soba noodles with stir-fried bok choy:
On a recent trip to HMart, the Korean supermarket, I discovered several different flavors of furikake (there are many!), and so I’ve taken to collecting different varieties and adding them to my spice cabinet. My only stipulation is that it has to be a brand without MSG, so if you’re also avoiding it as well, make sure you read the labels. There are salty-nori-sesame combinations, and also sweeter combinations like this one with dried apple, carrots, radish, and ginger.
Now that I’m telling YOU about furikake, aren’t you going to ask yourself, “where in the world have I been?”.