How to Enjoy Nagatanien Ochazuke Nori Rice Seasoning
Steamed plain rice and miso soup are the staples of the Japanese diet, so a wide range of condiments for rice are available at supermarkets in Japan.
Among those, “Furikake (ふりかけ)” is especially popular and comes in many varieties like these.
Furikake is a rice seasoning consisting of dry mini flakes or granules processed from ingredients such as meat, fish, eggs, seaweed, and sesame seeds, and we enjoy it sprinkling over rice.
Furikake is relatively well known in some countries and, in recent years, can be bought on online marketplaces like Amazon.com.
But have you ever heard of “Ochazuke Nori (お茶づけ海苔)” rice seasoning?
Nagatanien Ochazuke-Nori (永谷園 お茶づけ海苔)
The Ochazuke Nori produced and sold by the Japanese food company “Nagatanien (永谷園)” is one of the most common rice seasonings in Japan.
It was first introduced in 1952 and now has become one of the most loved seasonings in Japan.
This Ochazuke Nori seasoning (the original flavor) is made up of green seasoning powder, shredded nori (seaweed), and crispy rice crackers like matchsticks.
From the picture above, you might wonder, “Is this a kind of Furikake seasoning?” But unlike Furikake, you need to take one more step before eating the rice.
After sprinkling the Ochazuke Nori seasoning on a bowl of white rice, you have to pour boiling water into the bowl until the rice is entirely soaked, as shown above.
Additionally, if desired, you can garnish the soup with some topping, like Umeboshi plums or grilled salmon flakes. This time I added a piece of Umeboshi.
This rice soup dish has a light, moderately salty taste where umami from the seaweed Kombu comes first, followed by a faint aroma of Matcha.
The taste balance is perfect, because of which, Ochazuke has been a long-time favorite in Japan.
Lastly, let’s see the specific ingredients. Based on the list, the Nagatanien Ochazuke Nori original flavor consists of seasoning powder (salt, sugar, Matcha green tea powder, Kombu seaweed powder), Arare rice crackers, and nori (seaweed).