Ginger Rice (生姜の炊き込みご飯)

Young ginger (which is smaller, milder in flavor, and has thinner skin) is recommended for this recipe. However, regular ginger root works in this dish too (although your rice will have a stronger ginger flavor). Aburaage (油揚げ) are deep fried tofu skins- you can find them in most Asian grocery stores (some regular supermarkets and health food stores also stock aburaage, but you may have to call around to find one in your area that does). If you can’t find aburaage, you can omit it from this recipe, but the tofu does add some extra flavor and texture to the rice.


  • 1½ cup Japanese short-grain rice (sushi rice)
  • 1 piece aburaage (Japanese deep fried tofu pouch) (optional)
  • one 1-oz piece fresh ginger root (preferably young ginger)
  • 1 ¼ cups water


  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sake
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Equipment: rice cooker

1. Rinse the rice and drain well (I recommend doing this in a colander). The water will look slightly milky at first because of the rice starch, just keep rinsing until the water runs off clear.

2. If using aburaage, boil a little water in a small saucepan and pour over the top of aburaage. This will remove the oily coating on the aburaage (this manufacture’s oil doesn’t taste very good, so this extra step will improve the flavor). Cut the aburaage in half lengthwise and then slice thinly into strips.

3. Peel the ginger and cut it into julienned pieces.

4. Mix all the ingredients for the rice seasoning in a 2 cup measuring, and then add water to the seasonings so that the liquid totals 1 ½ cup (equal volume as rice).

5. Place the (drained) rice into the rice cooker. Pour the liquid into the rice cooker and mix well, and add ginger and aburaage on top.

6. Start cooking. When the rice is done, let it steam for another 10 minutes. Fluffy it up with the rice paddle and serve.