Prep 20 mins
Cook 20 mins
I got this delicious recipe for Okonomiyaki from my friend Mayumi, who is from Osaka. Okonomiyaki is basically a savory vegetable and meat pancake that is topped with 2 kinds of sauce: Okonomi sauce, which is similar to Worcestershire sauce but is thicker and sweeter, and Mayonnaise - the mayonnaise used on okonomiyaki is a Japanese brand called Kewpie. It is a bit thinner and more tangy than the mayo sold in the US. Many people call Okonomiyaki "Japanese Pizza", which is a translation that doesn't really work, frankly. It is round, hot, and you choose what sort of meat you want to put in it; but that's pretty much where the similarities end. You can use whatever sort of meat you'd like in these, the most common is pork and/or shrimp; but you could use chicken or bacon or squid or anything, really. There are some ingredients in this recipe that you will need to get from a Japanese grocery store. If you don't have one in your town you can order them from Amazon.com - they sell the Okonomi sauce, Kewpie Mayonnaise, and an "Okonomiyaki Kit" which has Bonito Flakes and the mix for the batter in it. Weirdly, the kit does not have the two sauces in it. Tenkasu are crunchy bits of fried flour and they are also called Agedama. If you can't find them just leave them out. Nagaimo is a type of Japanese yam. If you can't find it you can just leave it out. Do not try to use the yams we have here in the US - it's a very different type of yam. If you can find the Nagaimo, when you grate it it will have a very runny, sticky texture, kind of similar to egg whites. I chop the cabbage, green onions, kimchee and pickled ginger all at the same time in my Cuisinart - it goes much quicker that way. You can make 1 large pancake or 2 smaller individual servings. I like to do 2 because they are easier to flip that way! Whew! Anyway, I hope you enjoy your Okonomiyaki! It is delicious and also a good way to get kids to eat some cabbage ;) *NOTE*: the Recipezaar computer doesn't recognize a lot of the ingredients in this and won't let me put them in the "Ingredients" area, so I am listing them here: Where it says "1 cup flour", it should say 1 cup Okonomiyaki mix. Also, these are needed: 1/2 cup Nagaimo, peeled & finely grated; 1/2 cup kimchee, finely chopped; 1/2 cup Tenkasu.
- In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, nagaimo and water.
- Slowly beat in the okonomiyaki mix until it is well incorporated with the nagaimo/egg mixture. This is your okonomiyaki batter.
- Mix the cabbage, kimchee, green onions and pickled ginger into the okonomiyaki batter. Set aside.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and grease lightly with Pam or vegetable oil.
- Fry the pork belly until it is just cooked (do not brown, it will be cooking more later) and set aside.
- Add the 1/2 cup of tenkasu to the okonomiyaki batter.
- Make a large pancake (or two smaller ones) in the skillet with the okonomiyaki batter - you will have to be turning this pancake over at some point, so don't make it so big that you won't be able to flip it.
- Place the cooked pork belly on top of the pancake and push it down a bit (gently) into the batter. Let the pancake cook for about 10 minutes. Keep peeking at the bottom - you want it to brown but not to burn.
- Flip the pancake over and let it cook for another 5 minutes or so until it is browned.
- Place the pancake on a plate and top with okonomi sauce, mayonnaise, and bonito flakes - the heat from the pancake will make the bonito flakes "dance"! It's pretty cool.