Okonomiyaki is Osaka and Hiroshima's local specialty food. Mixing the dough and ingredients together beforehand is Osaka style, and layering the dough without mixing is Hiroshima style.
Photographed by Hideo Sawai
Calorie count is for a piece.
Ingredients (Makes 2)
- 50 g yamaimo
- 200 ml dashi
- 340 g cabbage
- 90 g chikuwa
- 1 Japanese green onion (50 g)
- 20 g benishoga
- 90 g flour
- Salt, a pinch
- 2 eggs
- 6 slices pork loin (thinly sliced)
- Lemon juice, a small amount
- Okonomiyaki sauce, as desired
- Aonori flakes, as desired
- Skipjack shavings, as desired
- Mayonnaise (preferably Japanese), as desired
- Ketchup, as desired
- Japanese mustard, as desired
- Vegetable oil
Roughly chop the cabbage, chikuwa, and benishoga. Chop the Japanese green onion.
Thoroughly wash the yamaimo, then grate with the skin still on. Add the dashi and briefly mix in.
Mix in the ingredients for [A] into the yamaimo mixture. When integrated, add the flour and salt, and stir in briefly.
Make sure not to overstir the batter once the flour is added. Ideally, there should still be some clumps of dry flour.
Portion out half of the batter. Just before cooking, add an egg and stir in briefly.
Preheat an electric griddle or frying pan (here we are using a hot stone plate) over medium heat, then add a small amount of vegetable oil to coat the entire surface. Add 2/3 of the batter mixture with the egg mixed in, and spread out slightly. Top with 3 slices of pork.
When using pork loin, it is best to cook it sandwiched between two layers of the batter mixture to keep it from drying out, while when using pork belly, it is best to cook it on top of the batter mixture to make it crisp.
Pour on the remaining 1/3 of the batter mixture to cover the top, including the pork, and shape the edges to make the okonomiyaki circular, then cover and reduce heat to medium-low to steam-fry for 3-4 min.
The okonomiyaki will be approx. 22-23 cm in diameter, and 3-4 cm tall, so use a domed lid if possible. You can also use a large pan in place of a lid.
After one side has finished cooking, turn the okonomiyaki over.
Do not press down on the top of the okonomiyaki with a spatula! The air will be pressed out, and the finished result won't have the light texture desired.
Cover again and steam-fry for an additional 3-4 min.
Turn over again and add lemon juice to the top surface.
The tartness of the lemon juice goes surprisingly well with okonomiyaki as a secret ingredient.
Top with plenty of okonomiyaki sauce, and aonori flakes and skipjack shavings as desired. Repeat to make a second okonomiyaki.
You can also add mayonnaise, ketchup, Japanese mustard, or other condiments as desired.