Saturday, May 5, 2012

okonomiyaki (japanese pancake)

I was born in Osaka, Japan and Osaka is famous for their okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake). Even though I left Japan when I was 10 years old, I still remember the taste of my favorite okonomiyaki place in Kadoma city (I hope it's still there. I haven't been back to Osaka for almost 19 years! Did I just tell you my age? haha). Anyway, my family also used to make okonomiyaki every Saturday. So it's one of my favorite comfort foods.  :) 


Cabbage - 3 cups (or more if you like)
Green onion - 2 stalks

Flour - 200g
Corn Starch - 40g
Baking powder - 10g
Salt - 1 tsp
Sugar - 1 tsp
Soy sauce - 1 tsp
Eggs - 2

Dashi water - 350-400 mL (with 2 tsp of dashi powder)

Thin sliced Pork - however much you want to put, usually 3-4 slices/pancake
Shrimp - however much you want to put, usually 4-5 shrimps/pancake

 [Sauce and garnish]
Okonomiyaki sauce or tonkatsu sauce
Japanese mayonnaise
Aonori (nori powder)
Katsuo (dried bonito flakes)

You can find aonori and katsuobushi from Asian market











  1. Cut cabbage into thin slices, 1 inch long - it's easier for the heat to go through.
  2. Chop green onion into small pieces.
  3. Make a batter by mixing eggs, soy sauce and sugar first. Then add flour, corn starch, baking powder and salt. Finally, add dashi water little bit at the time until the batter is thick, but smooth texture. If you like the batter to be lighter, add more water. *see TIPS 


  1. Coat frying pan with oil. Fry pork and shrimp until half way cooked. 
  2. Pour about 1 cup of batter on the pork and shrimp. Keep the shape to 4-5 inch circle so it'll be easier to flip later on.
  3. Let it cook for about 2 minutes, until golden brown (you can check by using frying spatula (bigger the better) to peek). 
  4. Flip using big frying spatula, or two spatulas.
  5. Cook for another 2 minutes or until it's golden brown and fluffy. 

You can make the circle shape using the spatula.


  1. Put the following on top:
    • Okonomiyaki/tonkatsu sauce
    • Japanese mayonnaise
    • Aonori (seaweed powder)
    • Katsuobushi (bonito flakes) 


  • Cut cabbage small so the heat will go through nicely & fast, too. If the pieces are too big, you get crunchy raw cabbage.
  • To know what texture you like, experiment first with thicker batter, then add more dashi water for the next pancake. 
  • 'Okonomi' means 'whatever you like' and 'yaki' means 'fry' so basically you can fry whatever you like. You can put any kind of meat, sausages, sea food, etc. So experiment and find your own okonomiyaki!

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