My husband and I were strolling in Little Tokyo some time ago and we noticed a restaurant with a huge line of folks waiting to eat. I was so curious. What does this place serve?! Upon closer inspection I discovered – it’s Okonomiyaki. It seems their version has been updated to what Americans would like. Some items look very elaborate and loaded with toppings. I regret not having the patience to sit it out and wait. Then of course I did what I do best – re-create Okonomiyaki the best way I can.
This recipe is its re-creation in a simpler form yet still using all the original ingredients.
- 1 cup Okonomiyaki pre mixed flour
- 2″ length nagaimo, grated
- 1/2 cup dashi stock
- 1/2 cabbage, shredded
- 3-4 tablespoons finely chopped onion
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1/4 lb ground pork
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup tenkasu or tempura scraps
- 1/8 cup pickled ginger
- vegetable oil
- Okonomiyaki sauce – ready made
- Japanese mayonnaise
- Dried bonito flakes
Start by peeling the nagaimo. Beware that it is very slippery and slimy. Grip it well especially while shredding. Shred about 1/4 cup and set aside in a small bowl.
Boil 1/2 cup of water and when it is hot mix 2-3 tablespoons of dashi powder in. Mix well. Combine the grated nagaimo with the dashi stock. Set aside.
Shred the cabbage. Place it in a large mixing bowl where you will add the okonomiyaki pre made flour, the eggs, dashi stock and nagaimo mixture, tenkasu, 1 tablespoon of pickled ginger, 3 tablespoons finely chopped onion and minced garlic. Lastly add the ground pork.
Mix well and season with salt and pepper.
If the mixture is too thick feel free to moisten it with more of the dashi stock. The goal is to have a thick layer of it in the pan when you mound using a ladle.
Meanwhile begin heating a saute pan with a matching lid. We will need the lid later to cover the pancakes and make sure the pork and all the veggies are cooked through.
When the pan is hot – fill a ladle and carefully pour the mixture unto the pan. One full ladle at a time. Turn heat to medium low and cover the pan.
After 5 minutes uncover and turn the pancake. The side down should be golden brown in color. Cook for another 3 minutes.
Transfer to a plate and begin putting the toppings. Start with the Okonomi sauce, then drizzle the Japanese mayo. Top with the pickled ginger and sprinkle with bonito flakes.
I made a video showing step by step instructions.