How to Make Totoro Rice Cakes — A Tutorial


Before I go off into the fascinating world of Totoro Rice Cake's, there are lyrics from The Cinematic Orchestra - To Build a Home I must share.

It goes:

Out in the garden where we planted the seeds
There is a tree as old as me
Branches were sewn by the colour of green
Ground had arose and passed it's knees
By the cracks of the skin I climbed to the top
I climbed the tree to see the world

When the gusts came around to blow me down
I held on as tightly as you held onto me
I held on as tightly as you held onto me

Combining these lyrics along with my favourite Hayao Miyaziki film hero, Totoro. I can just about envision the fluffy cat standing by his acorn seeds, climbing on tree tops, and roaring his head off in furious grace for all who have ears to hear.

I am grateful that someone strung these words together into a song that is perfect for making Totoro rice cakes.

These discoveries lead to a certain kind of excitement in being a creative. Knowing that you possess a skill or ability to create something that resonates with the world. It is quite empowering knowing that I have at the tip of my fingertips the skill to command an army of Totoro's to life. And while this post is to share my love for rice cakes, I hope that we all find and pursue diligently that medium where we bring much joy to ourselves and to the world.

Here are steps to making your own Totoro rice cake, for you and for me.


You will need:

Ground sesame powder
Cooked sushi rice
Piece of sliced cheese
Sheets of nori
Clean boba straw
Leaves to decorate


1. Mix sesame powder into rice for desired shade of grey. Puncture cheese with boba straw for Totoro eyes.


2. Use plastic wrap to mold grey and white rice into appropriate size for torso, abdomen and ears.


3. Trim circles of nori for eyes, nose, and half moons for belly. Insert ears into Totoro torso and secure with toothpicks.


4. For Susuwatari (Soot Sprites) — roll rice ball onto nori sheet, soften edges of nori with water to shape. Decorate with eyes.

5. There you have it, Totoro and soot sprite rice cakes.

Photograph them on black.

Gift them to a friend.

Introduce them to your hedgehog.


Photography + Styling by Sophia