Okonomiyaki means ‘grilled as you like it’, and it’s a really fun dish to make. It’s sometimes called ‘Japanese pancake’ or ‘Japanese pizza’ but it’s not really either. It’s most popular in Osaka and Hiroshima, and both cities claim to have the best version. I’ll let you decide for yourself, so try the Hiroshimayaki recipe as well. This dish originated in the post- Second World War period, when there was a huge famine and shortage of rice in Japan, so wheat was incorporated into the diet instead. This was also the time when ramen started to gain popularity, for the same reason. As the name suggests, you can literally put what you want in it, but this recipe is the most classic one. Traditionally, it’s cooked over a cast iron hotplate or ‘teppan’, but it works fine in a non-stick frying pan with a thick base, just make sure it is smoking hot before you add the batter.
How to make Okonomiyaki
Makes: For 4 people
Time to prepare: 35 minutes
½ large Chinese cabbage (300g+)
4 spring onions (=one small bunch)
40g pickled sushi ginger
16 slices of smoked bacon