We had plans to have dinner with our friends this weekend. Unfortunately the weather had its own plans and we ended up with no friends and a big pot of rice instead of a fun dinner party. Luckily for us my wife loves rice crackers and so I decided to tinker with our mountain of leftover rice. The results turned out delicious so I thought I would share them with everyone else. (While I have enjoyed browsing Instructables for a while this is my first post so here goes...)
Step 1: The Reagents
For this Instructable all you really need is RICE, PLASTIC WRAP, and HEAT. Everything else is just gravy--but I like gravy, so I also used:
- black sesame seeds
- little dried shrimp
- soy sauce (with some added sugar)
- nori (the seaweed wrappers that they use in sushi)
- cinnamon sugar
- spoon/spatula (because a spoon always makes everything better)
- griddle (a frying pan or oven would work just as well I think)
Step 2: Mixing
First, add to your bowl of rice enough of your sesame seeds/shrimp/whatever to give your crackers a good amount of flavor (but remember that sometimes less is more). MIx it in well so that it is evenly distributed throughout your rice. This step is also important because it lets you squish the rice together a bit before you flatten it.
Step 3: Time to Squish!
Next (with wet hands) pick up a ping pong ball amount of rice and ball it up in your hands. Place your ball of rice on a piece of plastic wrap, fold the wrap over the top of your ball, and commence squishing the ball of rice. While squishing it is important to think flat thoughts--paper, leaves, the Midwest--the flatter the better. Paper thin may be going a bit far but you should shoot for thinner than an individual grain of rice. Once your ball has become a sheet of rice peel it off of the plastic wrap and toss it on the griddle (frying pan or cookie sheet).
Step 4: The Reaction
(I chose to cook these crackers on a griddle-hot-plate gizmo but I think it may work better in the oven. I would recommend a 350 degree oven and a cookie sheet.) With your squashed rice balls on the griddle it is waiting time. I kept the temperature at about medium to keep the rice from burning before the whole cracker was cooked. As the crackers began to brown and dry out I found it helpful to flip them over several times.
Once your crackers have browned and crisped you have the choice to eat them now or too flavor them with soy sauce or cinnamon sugar. Since I was experimenting I dipped some in soy sauce and brushed others. I then put the crackers back on the griddle to cook the soy sauce and crispy them up again (these ones burn easier so be careful).
Step 5: Happy Snacking!
Once the crackers are done you still have almost endless options. You can eat them plain, wrap them in nori, or use them as the base for a fancy hors d'oeuvres (I think that the sesame ones would be great with cream cheese and smoked salmon). I hope you experiment and make your own! I look forward to hearing about any good combinations that you make/imagine in the comments section. Happy snacking!