Japan AFF: Okonomiyaki

Some twelve years ago when I first moved to Melbourne, Daimaru was one of the biggest Japanese Chain right in the CBD. To be specific, it used to occupy the majority of Melbourne Central. Why did I bring a shopping centre into this picture? Well, anyone still remembers the Okonomiyaki they used to serve at their food section? That has to be one of my tastiest memories when it comes to Japanese food. You see, growing up in Bintulu, my knowledge of Japanese food was limited to sushi, and expensive seafood. There wasn’t even one Japanese restaurant back home (there are a couple now, I believe), so when my friend brought me to try this Okonomiyaki during my first couple of months of settling in Melbourne, it was a revelation. To be honest I have already forgotten what made their version so good, but I’m sure a few Melbournians are still nodding your heads right now… right? By the way, Daimaru closed down the same year I moved to Melbourne, so I had to resort to other places, but never had one as good as theirs.

Literally, Okonomiyaki means “Grilled what you like”, it’s almost like a Japanese version of Pizza (although the consistency is probably more like pancake), where you can choose a variety of toppings. Cabbage is usually the main ingredient and I have seen Bacon being used in most recipes. Although the ones I used to buy in food courts in Melbourne are largely meat free.

Okonomiyaki, the way I like it.
Okonomiyaki, the way I like it.

Since we kicked off the Asian Food Fest (organised by Wendy again following the very successful Malaysian Food Fest) with Japan, I thought I would share this recipe with you. I have kept it really simple and used special Okonomiyaki flour which you can now buy in most supermarket (so I don’t have to get everything else separately and end up not using them). To me, Okonomiyaki means convenience, so I allow myself to ‘cheat’ a bit here.

Basic Okonomiyaki

50g Okonomiyaki Flour (if not using special flour, use all purpose flour with some dashi powder, bonito flakes, tempura bits)
1/3 cup of Water (or Dashi stock)
1 Egg
Cabbage, around 150g, cut into small strips
3 stalks Spring Onions, finely chopped
3 strips of Bacon
Handful of Bonito Flakes
Okonomi sauce, to taste (easily found at the Jap food section of your supermarket)
Kewpie Mayonnaise, to taste
Optional: Prawns, Chinese Sausages, Benishoga (Pickled Ginger)

Whisk, whisk away!
Whisk, whisk away! You can see this flour has some bits of tempura as well as bonito flakes already.

In a large bowl, whisk together Okonomiyaki Flour and Water until smooth

Add Eggs, Cabbage, Spring Onions and mix, but don’t over mix.

Ready to go!
Ready to go!

Heat a bit of oil in the large skillet and add Okonomiyaki mixture.

Here we go!
Here we go!

Using a spatula to flatten and form pancakes until around 1.5cm (3/4″) thick. Add Bacon pieces to cover top of each pancake.

Not perfectly round, nevermind, the sauces will cover it.
Not perfectly round, nevermind, the sauces will cover it.

After about 3 minutes, flip over pancake (bacon side down) and cook for 4 minutes. You might want to flip to do the other side if it’s not fully browned.

Forgot to take a photo before I flip. So here's a second flip. Haha!
Forgot to take a photo before I flip. So here’s a second flip. Haha!

Remove to plate and drizzle with Kewpie mayonnaise, okonomi sauce and sprinkle with more Boniko flakes.

Serve hot!
Serve hot!

It’s not the most elegant dish, but I suppose it’s more of a comfort food. At least for me.

Want some?
Want some?

I love the complexity of the flavours despite using very few ingredients. Fun textural contrast between the pancake, slightly crunchy cabbage and crispy bacon. I did have to split this into 2 portions though (still recovering from my illness so appetite is not quite there yet). I might try a salmon version next time, or mentaiko. Yum.

What is your favourite Okonomiyaki topping? Do you have a favourite Japanese dish?

I am submitting this to Asian Food Fest Japan Month, hosted by Alan of Travelling Foodies.

50 Comments Add yours

  1. trixpin says:

    I love your pig whisk! The dish look very yum 🙂

    1. kellysiew says:

      Thank you! I have a special fondness to cute piggies since I was born in the year of boar.

      1. trixpin says:

        Oh, I get it! I was year of the snake, but I’m not too keen on them … no snake utensils for me 😉

      2. kellysiew says:

        Hahahaha that would be a little odd wouldn’t it?

  2. suituapui says:

    Daimaru? Sounds familiar. Did they have that in Singapore? This looks good!!! Ya…your whisk is so cute!!!

    1. kellysiew says:

      Not sure if Singapore has/had Daimaru (I only know Takashimaya), but seems that the stores are all in Japan now. Hehehe yeah piggy because I am a piggy!

  3. drools… I love okonomiyaki… always wanted to make this but I just cannot read the darn label on those ready packed okonomiyaki batter mix. So gonna try this soon…

    oh ya.. the whisk is super cute!!! Daiso?

    1. kellysiew says:

      Oh, usually they will slap on an English label for ingredients, but not instructions.

    2. kellysiew says:

      I got the piggy whisk from Melbourne. It’s a shop called house.

  4. Phong Hong says:

    Kelly, I haven’t tried okonomiyaki yet but it sure looks delish especially with bacon 🙂 Gee, that piggy which is so cute! Where did you get it?

    1. kellysiew says:

      Maybe you can give it a try! Usually people would put prawns or octopus in it too (don’t really like seafood that much and bacon is already sinful enough for me). I got the piggy whisk from Melbourne. 😛 It’s a shop called house.

  5. Poh Huai Bin says:

    Thanks for the recipe Kelly! I’ll love to try making this on my own, but to be honest I don’t really like Kewpie mayo (the vinegar they use doesn’t agree with my taste buds) but a lot of people love it.

    I used to hang out at Melbourne Central too, this was before Fed Square was completed. It’s usually my first stop since there was zoning at that time (Clayton is Zone 2 and Huntingdale Zone 1 (which is just a quick 5 minute drive away, so that’s where I’ll park and take the train to central).

    1. kellysiew says:

      There are a few good homemade kewpie mayo recipes out there, you could play around with it and substitute the rice wine vinegar for lemon juice or something.

      My place was right at the cross over of zone 1 and zone 2 as well (Bentleigh), but I always drove to work since I worked in the opposite direction (either Dandenong or Clayton) ie against the traffic, so no problem la.

  6. There is a place in Franklin, Tennessee known as Dental Bliss, and
    this place is like no other dentist office you may have visited
    before. In days gone by, dental crowns or bridges were considered the
    obvious choice for replacing lost or irrevocably damaged teeth.
    It’ll only keep the mouth healthy when the brush reaches good condition along with the bristles is strong.

  7. Florene says:

    It takes about seven seconds to create a measurement.
    This top security program offers some support for decryption against many common protocols.
    Already it’s being used by mining companies to sue governments attempting to keep them from
    protected areas; by banks fighting financial regulation; by wway of a
    nuclear company contesting Germany’s decision to modify
    off atomic power.

  8. I will right away grasp your rss as I can not in finding your email subscription link or newsletter
    service. Do you’ve any? Please allow me recognize so that I may subscribe.


    1. Claudia says:

      I believe that is one of the most important info for me.
      And i am happy studying your article. But wanna commentary on some general issues, The web site style
      is ideal, the articles is really great : D. Good job, cheers

  9. I know this web page provides quality depending content and additional information, is there any other
    web site which presents these stuff in quality?

    1. I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was wondering what all
      is needed to get set up? I’m assuming having a
      blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very
      web savvy so I’m not 100% positive. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated.
      Many thanks

  10. We need to see companies moving into territory that laptop makers like HP and Dell currently occupy;
    tablets and phones priced and spec-ed for a very different kind of audience.
    Also, Android comes in many shapes and sizes meaning that there are a lot of options
    for consumers, but different screen sizes, different resolutions, and varying capabilities make development challenging.
    Is it just an touchscreen tablet or is it world domination.

  11. leases says:

    Does your website have a contact page? I’m having problems locating it
    but, I’d like to shoot you an e-mail. I’ve got some creative ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing.
    Either way, great site and I look forward to seeing it
    grow over time.

  12. nike bot says:

    Today, I went to the beachfront with my children. I
    found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear and screamed.
    There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear.

    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is
    completely off topic but I had to tell someone!

  13. Weber BBQs says:

    It’s really a great and useful piece of info.
    I am glad that you simply shared this helpful
    info with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks
    for sharing.

  14. Thanks for finally talking about >Japan AFF: Okonomiyaki | Kelly Siew Cooks <Loved it!

  15. Excellent article. Keep writing such kind of info on your page.

    Im really impressed by your blog.
    Hi there, You have done an incredible job. I will certainly digg it and for my part suggest to my friends.
    I’m confident they’ll be benefited from this site.

  16. Spot on with this write-up, I truly think this amazing
    site needs far more attention. I’ll probably be returning
    to read through more, thanks for the advice!

  17. Truly when someone doesn’t be aware of then its up to other users that they will assist, so here
    it happens.

  18. I write a comment whenever I like a article on a blog or I have something to valuable to
    contribute to the conversation. Usually it is triggered by
    the sincerness displayed in the post I read. And after this article Japan AFF:
    Okonomiyaki | Kelly Siew Cooks. I was moved enough to post a thought 😉 I do
    have 2 questions for you if you tend not to mind.
    Could it be simply me or does it seem like a few of the responses look like they are coming from brain dead visitors?
    😛 And, if you are posting at other online social sites, I’d like to keep
    up with anything new you have to post. Would you
    make a list all of all your communal pages like your linkedin profile, Facebook
    page or twitter feed?

  19. It’s actually a nice and useful piece of info. I am happy that you just shared this useful information with us.
    Please keep us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

  20. we junk it says:

    Thank you for sharing your info. I truly appreciate your efforts and I will
    be waiting for your next post thanks once again.

  21. I know this web site gives quality based posts and additional data,
    is there any other web site which offers these kinds
    of information in quality?

  22. Thanks for a marvelous posting! I definitely enjoyed reading it, you can be a great author.

    I will ensure that I bookmark your blog and definitely will come back later in life.
    I want to encourage you to definitely continue your great writing, have a nice holiday weekend!

  23. I think this is one of the most important information for
    me. And i’m glad reading your article. But should remark on some general things, The site style is
    perfect, the articles is really great : D. Good job, cheers

  24. Vid Infusion says:

    There’s definately a great deal to know about this issue.
    I really like all of the points you’ve made.

  25. I was recommended this blog by my cousin. I am now not certain whether or
    not this publish is written through him as nobody
    else realize such precise approximately my trouble.
    You’re incredible! Thank you!

  26. Thank you a bunch for sharing this with all of us
    you actually realize what you are speaking approximately! Bookmarked.
    Please also visit my web site =). We can have a link alternate arrangement among us

  27. This post will assist the internet users for building up new
    webpage or even a blog from start to end.

  28. Hurrah, that’s what I was exploring for, what a stuff! present
    here at this blog, thanks admin of this web site.

  29. I read this article fully on the topic of the comparison of most recent and earlier technologies, it’s amazing article.

  30. I’m not sure why but this web site is loading incredibly
    slow for me. Is anyone else having this problem or is
    it a problem on my end? I’ll check back later on and see
    if the problem still exists.

  31. This is very fascinating, You’re an overly skilled blogger.
    I’ve joined your feed and stay up for in the hunt for more of your great post.
    Also, I’ve shared your website in my social networks

  32. First of all I would like to say terrific
    blog! I had a quick question that I’d like to ask if you do not
    mind. I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear
    your mind prior to writing. I’ve had difficulty clearing my mind in getting my thoughts
    out. I truly do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are generally wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any ideas or tips?

    Thank you!

  33. Hmm it looks like your site ate my first comment (it was
    super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had
    written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to the whole thing.

    Do you have any tips for inexperienced blog writers? I’d really appreciate

  34. We always discover a two-room suite to be in that offers a sleeper sofa and 2
    separate TVs. Without a strap, in case you tip the sofa at a time to move it, cargo
    area frame is more likely to open up on you within the worst
    of places. Sofa sleeper manufacturers often usually focus more about the making of a Quality Sofa;
    the bed is basically an afterthought.

    There are space age technologies also useful for sofa mattress designs which includes the memory foam.
    The truth is, not simply you may get a sectional sleeper sofa or loveseats,
    and also some new concepts for example sectionals acquiring a constructed-in chaise seat.

  35. each time i used to read smaller articles which also clear
    their motive, and that is also happening with this paragraph which I
    am reading at this place.

  36. Hello, yeah this post is in fact pleasant and I have learned lot of things from it
    regarding blogging. thanks.

  37. I visit everyday some websites and websites to read
    articles or reviews, but this weblog gives feature based writing.

  38. This is the perfect blog for anyone who really wants to find out about this topic.
    You realize so much its almost hard to argue with
    you (not that I really would want to…HaHa). You definitely put a new spin on a topic which has
    been discussed for a long time. Great stuff, just excellent!

  39. ebola in us says:

    Magnificent items from you, man. I have understand your stuff previous to and you’re just extremely wonderful.

    I actually like what you have bought here, certainly like what you are
    saying and the way by which you assert it. You’re making it entertaining and you continue to take care of to
    stay it wise. I cant wait to read much more from you. That is
    actually a terrific web site.

  40. Very quickly this site will be famous amid all blogging
    people, due to it’s good articles or reviews

Leave a Reply to psychic powers Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s