Friday, 21 October 2011

Okonomiyaki - Japanese savoury pancake

Some time ago a friend who spent a few years in Japan sent me a link for a recipe for Japanese savoury pancakes known as Okonomiyaki. There aren’t many Japanese dishes that I haven’t taken a liking too and Okonomiyaki was no exception. I read that traditionally Okonomiyaki come in various styles, there is even a variety that has noodles added. I am not sure of the origin of this style of Okonomiyaki and I have adapted it somewhat so I cannot even guarantee it is completely traditional. I can guarantee it is delicious though!

Essentially Okonomiyaki is made with cabbage, egg, flour and any vegetables you wish to add. The word okonomi loosely translates to ‘as you like’ so you can simply add whatever you wish. You can also add meat, however I prefer the vegetable only variety. I have seen recipes with chicken, beef, pork or seafood added. I love to top mine with Tonkatsu sauce (homemade of course), Kewpie mayonnaise and pickled ginger. I am not sure ginger is traditionally used in toppings on Okonomiyaki. But it should be. Traditionally Okonomiyaki sauce is used for the topping however I am addicted to Tonkatsu sauce and since it is so easy to make at home I love to use this instead. From what I have read it is best to make these on a skillet or grill however I use a frying pan. I must try it on the grill one day.

Ingredients - makes 2:
1/6 cabbage, shredded
2 stalks of spring onion, diced
2 eggs
3/4 cup Okonomiyaki flour (I use the shrimp variety – see the image below for the packet)
2/3 cup water

I follow this recipe for the Tonkatsu sauce:
50ml kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
25ml Worchestershire sauce
1 clove garlic, chopped finely
1 tbs sugar

Mix water and flour together in a bowl until well combined. Add 2 eggs and whisk well. Add cabbage, spring onion and any cooked meat or other vegetables you wish to add, combine well. Heat frying pan and oil, pour half of mixture into hot pan and shape like a pancake. Fry for about 6-8 minutes; you will need to flip it over so it needs to be cooked well enough so that it does not break apart when you are flipping it. Using a spatula flip over and cook the other side for 6-8 minutes. Obviously the more ingredients you add the thicker the pancake.

Meanwhile combine ingredients for Tonkatsu sauce in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Simmer for approximately 15-20 minutes; it will thicken.

Pour Tonkatsu sauce over the cooked Okonomiyaki, top with pickled ginger and squeeze Kewpie mayonnaise over the top.

Okonomiyaki has a pizza-like resemblance and tastes divine. It is so easy to make and full of vegetable goodness!

* Kewpie mayonnaise and pickled ginger can be found in the gourmet aisle of your local supermarket. I found Okonomiyaki flour at a Japanese specialty store. You can also find readymade Tonkatsu sauce at gourmet stores.

For the first time ever I am linking up with Veggie Mama for her Meatless Mondays. Fabulous, just like Veggie Mama herself. Head over and check out some other wonderful vege recipes. Say hello to Veggie Mama too, she is super friendly.


  1. I'm all about the vegie recipes Peggy and this one looks delicious! I like every one of those ingredients, so no doubt would love this dish. Thanks for sharing :o) xo

  2. I love Okonomiyaki! I also make my own sauce. Yum-o, I could do with some of this right now :)

  3. ouuu I love okonomiyak! especially with lots of Katsuobushi (bonito flakes) you make me want to make it again! but I couldn't find the ingredients here in Kuwait. Thanks for sharing the recipe ;)

  4. where can i get the kewpie mayo

    1. I get mine from Coles, but any supermarket would stock it in the section where you'll find Japanese products. Otherwise try an Asian gourmet food store, they would stock it too.


I would REALLY love to hear your pretty thoughts. Since you're already here, why not leave me a comment?

Thank you for reading.

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.