Furikake(seaweed-sesame) cookies

I feel like this recipe would raise a lot of eyebrows. For those unfamiliar with it, furikake is a Japanese seasoning mix, usually made of seaweed and sesame seeds. It is sprinkled on rice to give the it more flavor and a little bit of texture. Furikake is also popular with Hawaiian poke as well! There are many different mixes for furikake, with some variations including dried fish flakes(for this recipe, please use the yasai fumi(vegetarian) furikake to avoid putting dried fish flakes into your cookie dough!). However, we are not using it for poke or on top of rice today. We are going completely sweet with it(in case you somehow skipped the photos and the title of the recipe). For context on how I decided this was a good idea, I was inspired by two different desserts. The first being furikake Chex Mix, which my sister’s boyfriend introduced me to. It is a Hawaiian snack, consisting of Chex Mix that is tossed with soy sauce, buttery caramel, and furikake, giving it this super sweet and salty contrast, and a brittle-like texture. It was honestly like cocaine to eat that. Super addicting, and dangerous in that you could probably inhale a bag of it without realizing. The second are seaweed and sesame egg waffles. I still remember during a date with my ex at the 626 Nightmarket years ago, we saw a booth that was selling those waffles. It was a very intriguing flavor combination(even though I deferred us towards ordering the mochi ones, only to go to the OC Nightmarket and order a seaweed-sesame egg waffle for myself a year later), with the seaweed adding a punch of salt, while the sesame adds smokiness.

For the cookies themselves, I went with a decent amount of dark brown sugar, just to sort of effect the caramel-like flavors from the furikake Chex Mix. I also used soy sauce as a further nod to that, in place of salt. The furikake is added at the end(I made sure to read the label on my furikake before adding it in, since that is the absolute safest way to guarantee you are not adding fish flakes into your dough), just to keep the seaweed from going completely soggy. Even though this recipe sounds hella weird(because the idea of putting seaweed into cookies sounds super wrong), I swear it tastes delicious. The soy sauce is really there to add salt in place of actual salt, while it works well with the brown sugar, creating an almost instant-caramel situation in the dough without having to go through the trouble of making and blending caramel into a cookie dough to get the same end-result! Between the dark brown sugar, soy, and furikake, you have a pleasant smokiness, almost caramel-like notes, and the occasional crunch of a sesame seed, all in a super buttery cookie. You don’t really get any funky or super-savory flavors in it at all, and that just makes it all the more palatable as a dessert! I am sure if you have had either a seaweed-sesame egg waffle or furikake Chex Mix, these cookies would hit on both of those nostalgia points really well, and you could totally get your fix of either off of a batch of these!

Makes about 16 cookies:
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cups dark brown sugar
1 tsp soy sauce
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 cups yasai fumi furikake

In a bowl, whip the butter with sugars and soy sauce until doubled in volume, about 5 minutes. Mix into that the soy sauce, eggs, and vanilla extract first. Then mix in the remaining ingredients. Freeze the dough for 1 hour before dividing into 16 pieces. Roll each piece out and place 6 cookies per sheet tray on parchment or silpat-lined sheet trays. Bake at 375 degrees F for 15 minutes. Should the cookies be misshapen, just use a 4-inch ring mold to press them into neat, round cookies, while they are still warm and out of the oven! Store the cookies in an airtight container before serving.

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