The Japanese theme continues tonight with Okonomiyaki (お好み焼き). Often called Japanese Pancakes or Pizza, I can see where they’re coming from but it’s more of an interesting hybrid. I used to eat this a lot when I lived in Japan the first time. There was a tiny little restaurant that did great Okonomiyaki and Monja, something I’m still looking for a good recipe for, in my neighbourhood. I never had it the second time I lived there and having tasted it again tonight I really don’t know why, it’s delicious!
My mum has been calling this ‘Economyaki’ and she’s kind of right. It is dirt cheap to make and I usually have everything in the cupboard. If you don’t have some of the specialist stuff like bonito flakes then don’t worry about it, it tastes equally good just with mayo and ketchup! We have an electric pancake maker that goes on the table top so I use this to cook them in front of everyone, if you don’t have something similar just use a nonstick frying pan and serve it from the hob.
I am so happy that this turned out so well, I was really afraid it wouldn’t taste like I remembered or that my family would hate it. Luckily it was fantastic and even my little sister, who hates cabbage with a passion, said it was delicious, she had hers with ketchup and mayo because she didn’t think she would like the sauce. She’s actually kinda mad that I made her like something with cabbage in it, oops!
Makes 1 large or 4 individual
For the ‘pancake’:
3/4 cup dashi (or water)
1 cup plain flour
1/4 head of white cabbage, thinly sliced
Your choice of toppings, I like shrimp, cooked bacon bits and may be some spring onion.
For the sauce:
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp dijon mustard
2 tbsp sake
2 tsp soy sauce
– In a small pan mix together the sauce ingredients and heat until boiling. Mix well so that everything is combined and smooth then allow to cool.
– In a medium bowl mix together the ingredients for the ‘pancake’ with a spoon until well combined. If preparing at the table I like to put in the dashi followed by the flour, followed by the cabbage, break the egg on top then arrange your toppings on the top.
– Spoon out the mixture onto your cooking surface in the servings you want, shape lightly into rounds and then leave for a few minutes until the base it lightly browned and you can see the change in texture about half way up the ‘pancake’.
– Flip it over using two spatulas. Be careful though, it is never as easy as you think it will be!
– Leave it for another couple of minutes until that side is browned too.
– Serve with mayonnaise, okonomiyaki sauce and bonito flakes.