Japan’s Nectar From the Gods: Okonomiyaki

So, you’re not sure what okonomiyaki is. Naturally, the first thing you do is wiki it.

(from Wiki) “Okonomiyaki (お好み焼き?) is a Japanese savoury pancake containing a variety of ingredients. The name is derived from the word okonomi, meaning “what you like” or “what you want”, and yaki meaning “grilled” or “cooked””.

To be clearer, okonomiyaki is a pancake whose main base is cabbage and an egg, which holds the ingredients together. Half of you are already thinking “sweet, I love cabbage” while the other half are saying “Cabbage pancake, that’s vile.” I, like the latter of you, was a very staunch and avid anti-cabbage advocate as well prior to discovering this beautiful concoction, so you must believe me when I say that a “cabbage pancake” is 1,000 times beter than it sounds.

Okonomiyaki can than have a variety of other ingredients added in to it. Popular choices include cheese (a 4 cheese “oki” is especially scrumptious), pochizu (round discs of potato with cheese inside), seafood (shrimp, scallions, squid), meats (bacon, pork, sausage, hot dog), kimchi (spicy Korean vegetables), and a variety of other vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, etc.). Of course, the beauty of okonomiyaki that these can all be mixed and matched, usually with a fantastic result.

Below, I’ll present a visual tutorial of how to make okonomiyaki using tonight’s dinner as a guide.  The selection:  kimchi and pork.

Step 1: Obtain desired ingredients.

Yes, those are rice krispies on the left hand side of the bowl. Not sure that they affect the flavor or the consistency, but it's still awesome that they put them in.

Step 2: Oil down the grille.

Step 3: Mix all the ingredients together until it resembles something you might encounter after a little too much sake.

At this point, it certainly doesn't appear like it could taste so good.

Step 4: Pour ingredients on to grille.

Step 5: Pat oki into a circular shape and let sit for 5 minutes

Step 6: Flip (Undoubtedly the hardest part of the process. ALWAYS use two spatulas!)

I'd like to think that I'm rapidly approaching "expert" level.

Step 7: Let cook for 5 more minutes.

Step 8: Slather on okonomiyaki sauce (described as a “sweet worcestershire sauce”) until your heart’s content.

Step 9: Apply copious amounts of mayonnaise. Swirl mayonnaise into some pretty design.

Step 10: Enjoy Japan’s greatest culinary delight since the sushi train.

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2 Responses to Japan’s Nectar From the Gods: Okonomiyaki

  1. mzunguprince says:

    i am heeeeeeeeeeere.

    and your blog writing is fantastic. i’m not sure how i’m going to live up to it.


  2. Pingback: A “Typical” Weekend in Japan | The Sherry Bento

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