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Okonomiyaki from a Mix - a Gift from a Friend

A Japanese favorite food, okonomiyaki sits someplace between an omelet and a pancake, from a Western point of view.

by Bob Kerstetter

A friend in Japan gave us a bag of okonomiyaki mix. Okonomiyaki reigns as a city-specific food throughout Japan. While you hear it described in many ways, okonomiyaki sits someplace between an omelet and a pancake, from a Western point of view. Every city makes okonomiyaki its own way. When many cities claim it as their own invention, they all speak the truth.

This is one way to make okonomiyaki from a mix.

Okonomiyaki In A Bag

The ingredients come in a bag—a present from a friend in Japan. Of course we cannot expect this, so we also have a recipe from scratch.

Okonomiyaki Instructions

Reading Japanese is easy—when you have pictures to help.

Okonomiyaki Batter

The batter is flour, a thickening agent and good old Texas water.

Okonomiyaki Ingredients Ready to Stir

Add sliced cabbage, green onions, seasonings and a couple of eggs. Mix very gently. Over mixing makes it tough.

Okonomiyaki on the Griddle

Place okonomiyaki on the griddle. While there are no instructions about oiling the griddle first, doing this is a good idea as becomes evident later.

Okonomiyaki Cooking Covers

Cover while cooking. Japanese restaurants do not necessarily do this, but the griddle we use is electric and needs to be hotter for non-covered cooking. We crank it to 400°F, more or less 205°C. Directions call for 200°C on side one, 250°C on side two and 250°C back on side one. The 250° exceeds the max of our electric griddle by 50°C.

Okonomiyaki Ready to Eat-More or Less

What is missing? Mayo! Bonito flakes are optional. Eat with chopsticks.

Okonomiyaki Cleanup

Oh, oil the griddle before cooking. No instructions on this, but you get the point. If you have a seasoned steel griddle, then oiling is not necessary.

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