I saw a recipe for Okonomiyaki on a blog I follow and thought, wow, breakfast lunch or dinner, veggies and proteins all in one in the incomparable Japanese creativity. Looking for unseen episodes trawling the internet I watched the Asia-China-Japan Special on Anthony Bourdain season two which featured the dish in Osaka in its multiple possibilities. Decided it was a new food/must try!
All toppings are acceptable but the fundamental base is shredded fresh cabbage and a basic pancake recipe. Two special purchases to make it more authentic are used as final toppings, Japanese Mayonaise (very similar to the type used in Holland for fries) and Tonkatsu sauce (similar to ketchup but as a ketchup hater this is a distinctly different flavor).
Toppings can be seafood, eggs, sausage, anything you want! Japanese bonito flakes are used for adding crunchiness inside the pancake, I’ve used potato chips, again anything to add additional crunch and flavor besides the cruchy fresh cabbage which is a base in the recipe.
3/4 cup of flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup water
1 cup chopped fresh cabbage
1 egg (or two if you use one as topping as in photo)
3 or 4 pieces of bacon, or smoked goose breast for kosher
green onions chopped
1 tsp olive oil
Tonkatsu sauce, Japanese mayo as sauces, potato chips, taco chips or bonito flakes for in batter
In a bowl combine dry ingredients, then add water to make batter base. Add chopped cabbage and bonito flakes or potato chips and sliced green onion to batter.
Heat olive oil in in pancake skillet. Pour batter into skillet to make a normal pancake size (caution: okonomiyaki is very filling). Heat until batter bubbles up and pancake browns on cooking side. Place bacon strips on top of the pancake then flip. Fry until bacon is cooked.
Transfer to a plate and dress with additional toppings, pictured here is a fried egg. Top decorately with tonkatsu sauce, mayo, green onion and more chips or flakes.