Soccarat, tahdig, nurungji, concon — scorched crispy rice is known by these names and many others in kitchens around the world. Often it's scraped from the inside of cooking vessels, a byproduct of working with poorly regulated heat, but the texture and flavor are enticing enough that the rice can be an end in itself. The concon I enjoyed at Nuevo Canario, in Bushwick, certainly gave the appearance of manufacture rather than happenstance.
Okoge is the term in Japanese, though in all honesty I'm not positive that it applies to the grilled surfaces of this onigiri ($5). Also known as an omusubi or, simply, a rice ball, mine was made of brown rice clamped around a few precious kernels of sweet corn. Brushed with soy sauce before grilling, the onigiri developed a crisp skin (too resilient for plastic utensils; fingers worked fine) but not a discrete layer that could be pried away. Is this a disqualification for true okoge? Perhaps, but in light of the distinctively nutty, delectable flavor of the scorched rice, it's an academic question and nothing more.
Rice & Miso Everyday
At the winter Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg, 80 North 5th St. (at Wythe Ave.), Williamsburg, Brooklyn
(Saturday and Sunday only, through March; see website for other locations)