You may be familiar with the pocket-sized Japanese rice balls called onigiri. If you know this delight, you’ve probably also enjoyed a Japanese-style sandwich with a fried pork cutlet, lettuce, a layer of Japanese mayonnaise and tonkatsu sauce between two slices of soft, spongy crustless white bread.
Now imagine if onigiri had a long-term relationship with the sandwich and produced a crossover that fulfilled all our lunch needs. Cue the onigirazu. A layer of rice and whatever pleases the soul are wrapped in seaweed into a flat square and sliced in half. Popular fillings include the aforementioned tonkatsu, ham, egg and cheese, tuna salad, caprese salads and more.
According to the Boston Globe, the origin of the rice ball sandwich can be traced back to a manga (Japanese comic) series from the mid-1980s called Cooking Papa.