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Okonomiyaki

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131 replies to this topic

#1 margaret

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Posted 04 April 2003 - 08:47 PM

Inspired by the Pizza Hut thread...

When I was working at a Japanese restaurant in the U.S., we were told to describe okonomiyaki to American customers as Japanese pizza.

What are your favorite toppings? Do you prefer Hiroshima style, with lots of cabbage between thin layers of batter? Or Osaka style, with all the ingredients mixed together and cooked like a pancake? Modan-yaki, topped with yakisoba? More unusual varieties you've seen?

Okonomi is usually a clean-out-the-fridge type dish for us. I like mine with mochi. Kimchi is good in it too.

The most unusual okonomi I ever had was at a tiny restaurant in Asakusa. Anko (sweet red bean paste) brought to the table after the meal with its own small bowl of batter, dessert okonomiyaki. I was the only one who enjoyed it I think.

#2 torakris

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Posted 04 April 2003 - 08:51 PM

I like Osaka style, everything all mixed together, a nice cabbage, seafood, nagaimo mix for me topped with some thin slices of pork belly, the finished product topped with okonomiyaki asuce, mayo, aonori, and benishoga.

My absolute favorite though?
monjya-yaki :biggrin:

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#3 nightscotsman

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Posted 04 April 2003 - 09:14 PM

I've only had Osaka style (and loved it), but the Hiroshima style sounds interesting. Know of any good recipes for that version?

Speaking of Okonomiyaki - My Mom is a very timid eater. No herbs, no spices, no "wierd" ingredients, the Olive Garden is her favorite restaurant. But I made some Okonomiyaki for her for lunch one day and she LOVED it, even with the okonomi sauce and bonito shavings! In fact, she asked me to make a second batch so she could have more. It really is yummy and comforting.

#4 Sweet Willie

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 07:37 PM

Okonomiyaki is like a thick pancake and inbetween is stuffed whatever you request, like shrimp, pork, bacon, shredded cabbage and vegetables. It is topped w/a Hoisin like sauce and sometimes mayo. Most Okonomiyaki restaurants also serve Yakisoba which is fried chinese noodles and cabbage (as well as anything you want such as fish, shrimp, pork).

In the building adjacent to the Osaka Hilton called the Hilton Plaza, is an okonomiyaki restaurant on the basement second level (B2) called Okonomiyaki Madonna, open from 11am to 9:30pm. They had an English menu which is not common in Japan.

We started out w/one order of Yakisoba w/shrimp as an appetizer. VERY GOOD!!!!

I then had the Okonomiyaki w/ bacon and pork while my wife had the Hiroshima Okonomiyaki w/ shrimp and mushroom. Hiroshima Okonomiyaki seemed to have a different and heavier tasting sauce on top of it. Both however were VERY VERY tasty and really hit the spot w/some cold Asahi Beer. Our bill was $26 USD.

My wife and I agreed that the bacon and shrimp were the tastiest and the regular Okonomiyaki was better than the Hiroshima version.

so the next day for Lunch before we left on our flight we had a shrimp/bacon okonomiyaki which was great
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#5 torakris

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Posted 23 October 2003 - 01:41 AM

next time you are in Japan give monjya-yaki a try, similar to okonomiyaki but runnier (?).
I tried making it at home last winter and it just doesn't taste the same.

Okonomiyaki is one of my really lazy dinners, especially when I have nothing in the house but cabbage, I feel an okonomiyaki mood coming on! :biggrin:

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#6 skchai

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Posted 27 November 2003 - 10:22 AM

Here is a nice webpage on Hiroshima-style Okonomiyaki, complete with number-coded "21 separations eating method" by Bunpei Yanagi, an "okonomi-yaki analyst". Here is the Japanese page.

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http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

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#7 skchai

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Posted 29 November 2003 - 11:56 AM

We have a local branch of the Osaka-based Okonomiyaki Chibo chain here at the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center in Waikiki. Good but EXPENSIVE for okonomiyaki.

Here's a nice set of pictures by our wonderful local blogger, Donna (champuru.com).

Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

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#8 torakris

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Posted 24 February 2004 - 03:29 PM

All of the talk of okonomiyaki (over on the tonkatsu thread http://forums.egulle...howtopic=37729) got me craving this yesterday. As I was shopping I noticed in the frozen foods section a one person size frozen okonomiyaki complete with a special sauce, a mayo type sauce (that tasted like a mayo mustard blend), kastuo bushi (bonito flakes), and aonori (seaweed flakes). Pre-cooked you warm it up in your microwave and then add the toppings, have to admit it wasn't half bad.... :blink:
some pictures, sorry they are slightly blurry :angry:

Posted Image

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#9 VeryApe77

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Posted 25 February 2004 - 09:53 AM

Living in Chicago, I'd actually never heard of okonomiyaki until I saw a recipe for it in the last issue of Giant Robot (one of the best magazines in America, in my opinion, and a constant source of education). I made it for the first time last night and liked it a lot. I think I undercooked it a little bit...and used too much cabbage...but I can work all that out next time. It was certainly easy and quick and (as I already have all the ingredients in my pantry pretty much all the time) incredibly cheap. A great discovery!

#10 helenjp

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Posted 02 March 2004 - 07:57 AM

I first lived in Osaka when I came to Japan, so that's the style of okonomiyaki that I "grew up with". I like monja-yaki, but it's just too deviant to be a regular on my home menu! Recently took a nephew from Hokkaido to eat monja-yaki - he was totally stoked to be having such an exotic dinner! We have a great Hiroshima-fuu place nearby, so I never make it at home -- why compete.

Nagaimo -- yes, has to be included, but even the dried, powdered kind is better than none. Failing that, plenty of egg (though monja-yaki addicts might disagree). It makes a difference if you use dashi instead of water to mix, but if that's too much hassle, stirring in a packet or so of katsuobushi is a fair alternative!

VeryApe, from past experience my guess is conversely that you maybe had too much batter for your cabbage. There should be only enough to bind the whole mess together. Some people say that the monja-yaki rules apply to all okonomiyaki: cabbage should not be cut ultra fine, but once the cabbage and batter are poured onto the plate, you should use the little "kote" (hmmm - sharp spatula??) in a rapid stamping motion which cuts up the cabbage, forcing the juices into the batter, and keeps the batter in contact with the hot plate.

Funnily enough, I'm planning an okonomiyaki breakfast for tomorrow morning...tuna sandwich breakfast (extremely exotic for a Kiwi) the day after, all courtesy of eGullet!

I lived on this when I was a student in Tokyo -- not only cheap and filling, but also saved on washing up if I turned it straight onto my calligraphy practice paper and ate it directly from the paper!

#11 yellow truffle

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Posted 11 March 2004 - 12:15 PM

Living in Chicago, I'd actually never heard of okonomiyaki...

As a fellow heartlander, this interests me. Maybe it has something to do with Chicagoans stuffing pizza with all kinds of ingredients. I did some searching and found this on how to make okonomiyaki. I will go to Mitsuwa and look for some of these prepackaged goodies. Thanx for the info.

#12 Norio

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Posted 20 March 2004 - 12:41 AM

I definitely prefer the Hiroshima style. Osaka style is too doughy for me. I first tried it in Japan, prepared by a woman from Hiroshima. I took careful notes of how she made it, and figured out how to do it without the teppan when I got back to the U.S. I like mine with cabbage, moyashi, yakisoba, pork belly, tenkasu and ika-ten, with aonori, green onion, and sauce on top.

I've never had it at an actual okonomiyaki-ya, so I'm looking forward to it when I go to Hiroshima in a few months.

#13 Carolyn Tillie

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Posted 23 March 2004 - 02:12 PM

I had my first Okonomiyaki in a restaurant in Gardena, CA about five years ago. Now that I am up here in Napa, there is none to be found. Desperation set in and I have acquired a mix to make my own plus a bag of the bonito flakes and the pickled ginger. From what I can tell on the mix, I use 100 grams of mix to 100 cc's of water and 1 egg.

Grill it like a pancake while adding in other ingredients? I need help on the rest of it! Torakris, your recipe link doesn't work any more!!!

I'm going to need guidance on the sauces. Can I create them? I'm reading here about shredded cabbage, bacon, shrimp, mushroom, pork... and I'm getting overwhelmed.

#14 jrufusj

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Posted 24 March 2004 - 05:48 AM

Torakris, your recipe link doesn't work any more!!!

Carolyn:

Can't vouch for these recipes, as I haven't used them, but they should give you some idea. They should at least give you enough to get started, then you can experiment until you get what you like.

Weird Page With Okonomiyaki Recipes

Another Okonomiyaki Recipe Page

Good luck,

Jim
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#15 Carolyn Tillie

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Posted 28 March 2004 - 11:11 AM

Here is my attempt at my first homemade okonomiyaki... help me critique:

I made the batter with 100 grams of mix, 100 ccs of water, and 2 eggs. I think I may have made too much batter and half that amount would have been sufficient. It was a REALLY thick patty of batter. I made a sauce of 4 tablespoons soy sauce, 2 tablespoons katchup, 2 tablespoons mirin, 2 tablespoons Worcester sauce, and 2 teaspoons sugar, brought to a boil with a little pepper added.

I poured it in the griddle pan and when it started bubbling (like pancakes do), I added shredded Napa cabbage, three sliced green onions, about a dozen grilled shrimp, and enoki mushrooms.

I let it continue cooking and made the attempt to flip it over and the cabbage cooked a bit. While it was on its flip-side, I brushed the cake with some of my sauce. I went ahead and flipped it back over and covered it, worried that the cake wouldn't cook through.

When I plated it, I added a bit of shredded nori, black sesame seeds, pickled ginger, a bit of mayonnaise (maybe a tablespoon or two's worth), more of my sauce, and bonito flakes. (Sorry I don't know all the Japanese names).

It tasted really good, but I think the cake park was too thick -- two of us couldn't eat half of it!
Posted Image

So, what I'm wondering is; a) should I have used less battter, b) should I have slipped the cake over to grill the otherside BEFORE I added the other ingredients, or is it supposed to be stuck in the batter?

It was great fun and I'm looking forward to making more, so tell what sort of other ingredients I can add that make up your favorite okonomiyaki!

#16 prasantrin

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Posted 28 March 2004 - 02:34 PM

So, what I'm wondering is; a) should I have used less battter, b) should I have slipped the cake over to grill the otherside BEFORE I added the other ingredients, or is it supposed to be stuck in the batter?

Looks good, to me! I have not yet eaten okonomiyaki since my return to Japan but I have visited it at the deli (pre-made okonomiyaki from the supermarket) and the frozen foods section. Okonomiyaki (Osaka-style) should be thick--best I recall it can be 1/2"-1" thick, depending on the fillings.

IIRC, the cabbage is usually mixed with the batter and Osaka-style batter is thick--like a thick pancake batter. When and how the toppings are added depends on the toppings. When I add cheese, I add it before the first flip and I put a little more batter over it so it doesn't burn after being flipped (that's the same way I do it for pancakes). If I'm using bacon, I just place it on top before the first flip, with no additional batter. I'm not sure how seafood is added--mixed into the batter or placed on top--I've never been keen on seafood with my okonomiyaki. The fillings should be stuck, though, not lightly placed on top, so you were right to add them before the first flip.

My favourite toppings/fillings are cheese, mochi, bacon, and pork. Cheese and bacon or pork is an especially nice combination :smile: .

#17 torakris

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Posted 28 March 2004 - 02:44 PM

Okonomiyaki, the name actually means "cooked as you like it" and that is the best way to do it, find out what kind you like.
Okonomiyaki can take a while to cook, especially the thick ones easily go at least 15 minutes.
I prefer mine on the thinner side, about 1/2 inch thick, with the green cabbage (I have never actually seen it made with napa cabbage) shredded and mixed into the batter. I have more cabbage than batter for mine, but I do know people who prefer it more cakey. If using seafood I chop it and mix it into the batter as well.
My favorite is strips of fatty pork laid across the top before flipping and then turn the heat up at the end of cooking to crisp it up a bit.
I sauce mine off the heat with okonimiyaki sauce, mayo and sometimes mustard all sort of swirled together and then top it with bonito flakes and devour.
They are very filling! the thick ones I can barely finish half of and the thickness I prefer I still find myself stuffing the last bites into my already full stomach.

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#18 yellow truffle

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Posted 26 April 2004 - 01:05 PM

My first ever Okonomiyaki and I'm hooked.

Dinner on Saturday was done by my friend and her husband, both Japanese (aka. The Japs). It was a celebration of Spring. We had three types of Okonomiyaki: Hiroshima, Osaka and Manja (Tokyo Sytle).

First up, Manja. Cabbage was arranged in a ring on a griddle with a light coat of oil. The flour mixture (with cubes of mochi) was placed in the center. Constant stirring was done until thickened. Then completely mix and spread out to form a thinner pie shape. Upon reaching desired state, we ate from the griddle with the 'spife' (what I call the flat spoon / small knife combination, like a flat spatula, but in mini form). A simple dish and a great introduction to the oknomiyaki. There was no other toppings added, those would be saved for the Hiroshima and Osaka style. Hiroshima style was next, then finished with the Osaka Syle. All were good and tasty. I enjoyed the Hiroshima style best. The addition of the yaki soba noodles was a nice touch to this style. It created a nice layered effect, where one can taste every layer in its pure unmixed ingredient combination. All in all this stuff is great.

#19 torakris

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Posted 26 April 2004 - 03:16 PM

My first ever Okonomiyaki and I'm hooked.

Dinner on Saturday was done by my friend and her husband, both Japanese (aka. The Japs). It was a celebration of Spring. We had three types of Okonomiyaki: Hiroshima, Osaka and Manja (Tokyo Sytle).

First up, Manja. Cabbage was arranged in a ring on a griddle with a light coat of oil. The flour mixture (with cubes of mochi) was placed in the center. Constant stirring was done until thickened. Then completely mix and spread out to form a thinner pie shape. Upon reaching desired state, we ate from the griddle with the 'spife' (what I call the flat spoon / small knife combination, like a flat spatula, but in mini form). A simple dish and a great introduction to the oknomiyaki. There was no other toppings added, those would be saved for the Hiroshima and Osaka style. Hiroshima style was next, then finished with the Osaka Syle. All were good and tasty. I enjoyed the Hiroshima style best. The addition of the yaki soba noodles was a nice touch to this style. It created a nice layered effect, where one can taste every layer in its pure unmixed ingredient combination. All in all this stuff is great.

Yellow truffle,
Glad you enjoyed it!
Sounds better than the very simple on I made on Sunday night.....
Just one question, do you mean monjya-yaki (when you say manja)?

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#20 torakris

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Posted 26 April 2004 - 03:20 PM

here is a really nice okonomiyaki paget hat I just recently discovered:

http://www.eat-japan...pe/volume9.html

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#21 yellow truffle

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Posted 26 April 2004 - 03:33 PM

Just one question, do you mean monjya-yaki (when you say manja)?

With Japanese not being my primary or secondary language, I tend to butcher words, my bad. You are correct, monjya-yaki it is.

here is a really nice okonomiyaki paget hat I just recently discovered:
http://www.eat-japan...pe/volume9.html

Great link, thanx for sharing.

#22 Carolyn Tillie

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Posted 26 April 2004 - 03:50 PM

I have a pronunciation question - which is it?:

Ōh-con-a-miyaki

or

Ōh-kōh-nōh-miyaki


Thanks!

#23 Hiroyuki

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Posted 26 April 2004 - 04:03 PM

I have a pronunciation question - which is it?:

Ōh-con-a-miyaki

or

Ōh-kōh-nōh-miyaki


Thanks!

The latter is correct.

Or, should I write:

o-ko-no-mi-ya-ki
(Each vowel is a short one. oh, koh, and noh are used to denote long vowels.)

In hiragana:

おこのみやき

It is usually spelled お好み焼き, but there are other forms like:
お好焼き
お好焼

All these are pronounced the same way.

You may find the new thread "An interface between the two languages" useful.

#24 Hiroyuki

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Posted 24 May 2004 - 07:22 AM

As a proponent of simple food (and as a native Japanese), I have my own preferences on okonomiyaki:

Meat (usually pork) is optional, so are many other items.

So, the main ingredients are okonomiyaki mix (which I usually get from the local 100-yen shop), a lot of sakura ebi (shrimp), eggs, and cabbage.

I sprinkle a lot of dried bonito flakes on the finished okonomiyaki. I make the sauce by mixing equal amounts of ketchup and tonkatu (or okonomiyaki) sauce.

Boring? Sorry, but that's the way I like it.

#25 torakris

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Posted 06 June 2004 - 05:14 PM

My in-laws took us out for dinner last night and we went to an okonomiyaki restaurant. It is a actually a chain restaurant called Doutonbori 道とん掘 and it serves more than just okonomiyaki. It was our first time to go and it was really a lot of fun.

We ate mostly monjyayaki, with a couple okonomiyaki thrown in for variation but the menu includes much, much more. The have edomae-yaki, yakiramen, yakissoba, yaki udon, pilaf, risotto, fried rice, bibimbap, soba meshi, yaki-onigiri as well as grilled meats, fish, seafood and vegetables. All of the above mentioned dishes are cooked at the table by yourselves on a teppan or hot plate. They also had a nice selection of salads and desserts.

the surprisingly good dish of the evening was an ika-sumi (squid ink) risotto..... :shock:


some pictures of their menu:
http://www.dan-b.com...bori-t/menu.htm

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#26 Yuki

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Posted 07 June 2004 - 08:03 PM

Is their any mayo on the Hiroshima style Okonomiyaki? All of the okonomiyaki seems rather large to be eaten by one person..... but we always order one for each person since it looks bad if two people share a normal serving of food.

#27 Hiroyuki

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Posted 07 June 2004 - 08:54 PM

Generally speaking, there is no mayo:
http://www.asahi-net...tu/okonomi.html
It's hard to see, but no mayo is used.

But, no laws against the use of mayo, of course:
http://member.nifty....mi/okonomi.html
Look at the middle photo in step 7. You can see mayo on the top.

Enjoy the site of Otafuku in English:
http://www.otafuku.c.../us/default.htm

#28 Yuki

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Posted 07 June 2004 - 09:04 PM

I am relieve now............. I could use all the mayo I want on the Hiroshima Okonomiyaki when I get to try it. Nothing beats mayo on okonomiyaki and takoyaki. :smile:

#29 Hiroyuki

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Posted 07 June 2004 - 09:29 PM

But the problem is whether you can find a mayo tube on the table when you enter an authentic Hiroshima-style Okonomiyaki shop...

#30 smallworld

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Posted 08 June 2004 - 12:03 AM

All of the okonomiyaki seems rather large to be eaten by one person..... but we always order one for each person since it looks bad if two people share a normal serving of food.

Really? We always share our okonomiyaki, I thought that was the norm. So do you cook yours at the same time, or does one person go first while the other person waits? Seems strange to me...
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