Okonomiyaki=Japanese Pizza

March 30, 2009

I found a modernized version of this dish on Heidi’s site. Upon finding the recipe, I immediately emailed it to my boyfriend (who lived in Japan for 4 years) to ask him if he’d ever tried it. He said he ate it often in Japan- it is cheap, abundant, casual food that can be dressed up or down, sort of like american pizza, hotdogs or hamburgers. You could get it from the street vendor or a cute little resto. So, my boyfriend who is forever nostalgic for his Japan, was really excited to recreate this dish at home. In fact, he ran over to the Hana Japanese grocery store at U and 17th St NW to get the necessary Japanese toppings (dried fish flakes, seaweed powder and red sauce that is sort of like ketchup).
Making the dish was really easy. We followed a combination of recipes, one coming from the Just Hungry website which is an automatic go-to site for Japanese cuisine. The ingredients are simple and the concept is basic. Blend a few eggs (2 to 3), shredded cabbage (1/2 to 1 bag) and a large handful of all purpose flour (1 cup) in a bowl and mix/coat evenly. Add salt and pepper to taste. In a hot, oiled skillet, place a well formed patty and let brown on one side, flip and brown on opposite side. it only takes about 4 to 5 min to cook each side. Then, dress it up your pizza with your favorite toppings.
I just put on a few sprinkles of the seaweed powder and a few tosted black sesame seeds because I’m not a huge fan of sweet sauces…plus the egg and cabbage alone had a wonderful flavor. My boyfriend dressed his up with a smothering of the red sauce and fish flakes. His version tasted ok, but I liked my simple pizza better.
This dish is classic poor man’s food. Comprised of flour, eggs, and cabbage, the meal only costs a few dollars to make, allows you to choose creative toppings, and serves as many as you like! I think next time I may even try making it with slices of potato inside!

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{ 1 comment }

Sharon April 13, 2009 at 10:09 pm

You make this sound much simpler than Heidi does, and I appreciate the local references. Been meaning to check out Hana since it opened and now with the new Circulator route, I just might!

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