Read about this on another Uechi forum. Sounds gross.
Hawaiians have a love affair with Spam - they eat it as a delicacy, adding it to soups and stews, treating it as a side dish for breakfast, and enjoying it as the main event for lunch and dinner. Residents of Hawaii consume more Spam than populations anywhere else in the world: More than four million cans every year, or an average twelve cans of Spam per person per year. In fact, Hawaii is so well associated with Spam that Hormel even introduced a limited edition "Hawaii" can in 2003.
The Hormel Company, in Austin, Minnesota, developed America's first canned ham in 1926. After the ham's were cut, the company was left with thousands of pounds of nearly worthless pork shoulder. Jay C. Hormel, son of Hormel founder George A. Hormel, developed the ideas of using the pork shoulder in a new product called "Hormel Spiced Ham." Since the name was rather uninspiring, a contest was ehld at a new year's Eve party for a new name with a $100 prize to the winner. The winning name was the name it goes by today - Spam. Kenneth Daigneau, an actor and the brother of a Hormel vice president Ralph Daigeau, won the contest.
During World War II, sales of Spam soared. In part because it requires no refrigeration, Spam was perfect for the military and became a standard K-ration for U.S. soldiers. Military personnel introduced it in Hawaii and elsewhere.
Spam even got its very own museum in September 2001 in Austin, Minnesota. The exhibit also includes a letter from President Eisenhower, praising the canned pink meat for keeping the troops fed and healthy.
A favorite Hawaiian way to eat Spam is in the form of a musubi (pronounced moo-soo-bee, with no accent). It is a fried slice of spam on rice pressed together to form a small block, then wrapped with a strip of seaweed. A special kitchen gadget, known as the Spam Musubi Maker, is responsible for the proliferation of this treat. It is a special plexiglas mold with the outline of a single Spam slice. The Spam musubi is eaten as a sandwich, and it is perhaps the Island's favorite "to go" or snack food. Spam musubi is literally everywhere in Hawaii, including local convenience stores, grocery stores, school cafeterias, and even at the zoo. Eating a Spam musubi seems to serve as a rite of passage for newcomers anxious to attain "local" status.
Hawaiian Spam Musubi
3 cups uncooked short- or medium-grain rice
4 cups water
5 sheets of sushi nori (seaweed in big squares)
1 (12-ounce) can Spam luncheon meat
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup rice wine (mirin)
Wash rice, stirring with your hand, until water runs clear. Place rice in a saucepan with water; soak 30 minutes. Drain rice in colander and transfer to a heavy pot or rice cooker; add 4 cups water. If you don't have a rice cooker, place rice and water into a large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; bring just to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and leave pan, covered, for 15 additional minutes.
Cut nori in half widthwise. Place cut nori in a resealable plastic bag to keep from exposing the nori to air (exposing the nori to air will make it tough and hard to eat).
Cut Spam into 8 rectangular slices approximately 1/4-inch thick. In a large ungreased frying pan over medium heat (Spam has plenty of grease to keep it from sticking), fry slices until brown and slightly crispy. remove from heat, drain on paper towels, and set aside.
In a small saucepan over high heat, add soy sauce, sugar, and rice wine; bring just to a boil, then remove from heat. Add fried Spam slices to soy sauce mixture, turning them to coat with the sauce; let spam slices sit in marinade until ready to use.
In a small bowl, add some water to use as a sealer for the ends of the nori wrapper; set aside.
Using a Spam Musubi press, place a piece of nori on a plate. Position press on top of the nori so the length of the press is in the middle of the nori (widthwise). The press and the width of the nori should fit exactly the length of a slice of Spam. (Note: If you don't have a musubi maker, you can use the empty Spam can by opening both sides, creating a musubi mold.)
Spread approximately 1/4 cup cooked rice across the bottom of the musubi maker, on top of the nori; press rice down with flat part of the press to compact the rice until it is 1/4-inch thick (add more rice if necessary). Place a slice of Spam on top of the rice (it should cover most of the length of the musubi maker). Cover with an additional 1/4 cup cooked rice; press until 1/4-inch thick. remove the musubi from the press by pushing the whole stack down (with the flat part of the press) while lifting off the press. Fold one end of nori over the musubi and press lightly onto the rice. Wet the remaining end slightly with water, then wrap over musubi and other piece of nori; press down on the other end. cut log into 4 pieces. Repeat with the other 7 Spam slices, making sure to rinse off musubi maker after each use to prevent if from getting too sticky.
Do not refrigerate musubi, as they will get dry and rubbery.
Makes 32 musubi.