A Window into Life in the Suburbs

"Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these." Luke 12:27 (NIV)

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Kitchen as Chem Lab: Okonomiyaki Take 2

Well, I didn't get it right the first time... but we got a decent meal out of it.  After looking at several videos on You Tube, the problem, I believe, with my first attempt was too many eggs and possibly too much water as well. My sense, from looking at the video clips, is that the texture needs to be somewhat gluggy... elastic almost.

I also discovered that Okonomiyaki is sometimes called "Japanese pizza" which makes a lot of sense when you see what different cooks cobble together. The gluggy texture does result in a thicker result which does *surprise, surprise* resemble the crust of a pizza.
At the end of the day, the moral of the lesson is that there doesn't seem to be just one correct way of doing it. Unless it ends up tasting like tree bark, it shouldn't matter too much how it's done.
Hence, this time I followed a fairly simple recipe. But I forgot the salt in round one... which isn't the end of the world because the mayo and brown sauce does take care of things.

This recipe makes one rather thick pancake about 20 cm in diameter.

1 cup of tempura flour
1 egg
3/4 cup of water
Pinch of salt
2-3 large cabbage leaves chopped finely
1 packet of fish (Bonita) flakes
2 sea food sticks sliced finely
Japanese maynonnaise
Okonomi sauce

Chop up ye veggies... cabbage is always good. Goes a long way.

Bonita flakes. I only use one small packet at time.

Dump the fish flakes into 1 cup of tempura flour. Don't forget the salt.

Add in 1 egg, 3/4 cup water and cabbage into flour. Fold ingredients together. Don't over mix.

I used seafood sticks this time round and sliced them finely.

Add sliced seafood sticks into the mix

Fry the mix in hot oil. I used a spatula to spread the mixture out so that it covers the entire based of the pan. If your fry pan is bigger than mine, I'm sure it'll work too. It'll be thinner but I can't imagine it'll affect the taste too much.

Seems to me that the tempura flour gives it that bumpy look

Add the sauces. My new tube of mayo doesn't quite lend itself to squiggles unfortunately. The piping on the bottle oozes out thick cream-like streaks.

I have noticed that some add dried seaweed as a garnishing, as in this photo.

I've adapted the recipe from this young lady's demo:


  1. yum yum yum!! Where did u buy the bonito flakes?

  2. Good old Yuen's! Will have to visit them next week then! :) Done with this week's shopping already. :(

  3. Hi Lilian, I live in Japan when I'm not living in sunny Qld! My husband made this with the Japanese church youth group a few years ago and they pretty much decided that cabbage, eggs and flour are the only required ingredients! Every Japanese has their own favourite ingredients. And yes, it is gluggy. We ate it the other day at a take-away place and it was gluggy (and yummy). Enjoy.


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