Pancakes – Okonomiyaki (Osaka Style Inspired)

Osaka Inspired Okonomiyaki, by Reggie Soang (click on the image for YouTube video)

Okonomiyaki is a pancake, pizza, or rosti, whichever you prefer, or not, but it’s a batter fried in a pan. The word okonomi means “whatever you like”, and yaki means to grill. Therefore, okonomiyaki is to “grill whatever you like”. There are two styles of okonomiyaki, Osaka-style and Hiroshima-style. This recipe is an Osaka-inspired because I don’t have the bonito flakes and nori powder to make it a traditional recipe. However, with the right batter and sauce, my version is as close and delicious as it gets outside of Japan. Remember…okonomiyaki is grilling whatever you like; be creative and bold, and cook whatever you like!

For the latest New Lifestyle Home Cooking:

Pancakes – Okonomiyaki
Serve: make 3 pancakes

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

1/2 doze Eggs
Chopped scallions, for garnish
Shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)

For the Batter:
1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour
1/4 cup (45g) potato starch
1 + 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
1 cup (205g) stock (or dashi)

For the Filling:
1/4 head (3 + 1/2 cup) finely chopped cabbage
1 cup grated carrots
2 tablespoons chopped pickled ginger
1/3 cup canned corn kernels, or fresh
2 tablespoons chopped scallions

For the Sauce:
4 tablespoons ketchup
3 + 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 + 1/2 tablespoon sugar
Kewpie Mayonnaise (Japanese Mayonnaise)**

**If kewpie mayonnaise is not available, here’s the homemade version: (just mix everything together)

1 cup Hellman’s mayonnaise
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon MSG
1/4 teaspoon sugar

  1. To make the batter, mix flour, potato starch, and baking powder together first. Add eggs and stock and whisk to combine. Don’t whisk too much; avoid creating excess gluten in the batter. 
  2. To prep the filling, cut and mix the veggies together. Pour the batter from the previous step into the filling and use a spoon to stir and fold the batter into the veggies. 
  3. For the sauce, combine everything from the recipe above and mix together.
  4. To make Okonomiyaki, place a non-stick skillet on medium heat. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil until it shimmers. Scoop enough veggie batter to cover 3/4 of the skillet. Sprinkle some mozzarella cheese on and add more batter to cover the cheese. Cook the first side until golden brown and then flip okonomiyaki over to cook the second side.
  5. Once the second side is golden brown, slide the pancake out onto a plate. Set aside. While the skillet is still hot, crack one or two eggs into it and stir to cook. Add a pinch of salt and then slide the okonomiyaki onto the egg(s). Brush the top of okonomiyaki with sauce generously and then garnish with scallions and serve. Bon appétit!

*Optional step, zigzag the kewpie mayonnaise across the okonomiyaki, and then use a skewer to drag the lines perpendicularly to form the pattern you see below.

Adding Kewpie mayonnaise, an optional step, by Reggie Soang


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