Food Trip: Okonomiyaki Osaka Style

A food trip in Japan is not complete without trying the okonomiyaki (お好み焼き o-konomi-yaki). It is a Japanese pancake made from a variety of ingredients. It is also prepared differently in different places.

Okonomiyaki Osaka Style

Okonomiyaki Osaka Style

The name okonomiyaki came from the words okonomi which means "what you want" or "what you like" and yaki which means "grilled" or "cooked".

Food Trip: Okonomiyaki Osaka Style
Food Trip: Okonomiyaki Osaka Style

The okonomiyaki batter

Okonomiyaki is mostly associated with the Kansai or Hiroshima areas of Japan but you could still buy anywhere in the country. Since we stayed in the Kansai area, particularly Osaka, we got the chance to try out the Kansai- or Osaka- style okonomiyaki. This is also where the dish originated.

Add the okonomiyaki sauce...

So what is the Kansai-/Osaka-style okonomiyaki?

The Kansai- or Osaka-style okonomiyaki is the predominant version of the dish which is served throughout most of Japan. Its batter is made of flour, grated nagaimo, water, eggs, and shredded cabbage. It usually contains other ingredients like meat, green onion, squids, octopus, shrimp, mochi, or cheese. It is topped with okonomiyaki sauce, aonori, katsuobushi, Japanese mayonnaise, and pickled ginger.

Then the aonori and Japanese mayo

Finally, top it with the katsuobushi

When cooked, okonomiyaki resembles a pancake, omelet, and even a pizza. We first tasted the dish in Ai Chan Restaurant where the cook prepared the dish in front of us. In other restaurants, the customers are allowed to mix and grill the dish in a special hotplate in the middle of their tables. 

Taste-testing the okonomiyaki.

Team Nicerio tries out the Osaka Okonomiyaki
The taste of the Osaka-style okonomiyaki is a bit similar to the Osaka-style takoyaki where one could easily taste the fish flakes on the first bite. (I'm sorry I'm not a foodie so I can't fully explain its taste... but it's delicious none the less.)  I haven't tried out the Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki though but it's on my to-do list when I go back to Japan.


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