Japanese Savory Pancake
1 cup okonomiyaki flour (can substitute with all-purpose flour)
1 cup dashi (Japanese cooking stock) – can substitute with water – (1 cup water to ½ tsp hondashi grains)
5 tbsp peeled and grated nagaimo (yam)
½ tsp salt
½ tsp soy sauce
½ tsp sugar
4 cups of cabbage, shredded
3 stalks of green onions
¼ cup Tenkasu (tempura bits)
2-3 tbsp Beni Shoga (pickled red ginger)
Vegetable oil for cooking (1 tbsp per pancake)
8 strips of sliced pork belly (6-8’’ pieces)
Aonori (seaweed flakes)
Katsuobushi (bonito flakes)
Peel and grate nagaimo yam to make 5 tbsp of grated nagaimo.
In a large mixing bowl, prepare 1 cup of dashi (per bottle instructions). This is a fish stock used in Japanese cuisine. The easiest way to make this is using granulated Hondashi - take 1 cup of water, add 1/2 tsp of Hondashi, and mix till it is dissolved.
Then add in 1 cup of okonomiyaki flour, and whisk it into the dashi until it is smooth. Add in the 5 tbsp of grated nagaimo yam, 2 eggs, and mix these together.
Add in 4 cups of shredded cabbage, 3 stalks of scallions sliced, 1/4 cup of tenkasu (tempura bits), 1/2 tsp of table salt, 1/2 tsp of soy sauce, 1/2 tsp of granulated sugar, and 2 to 3 tbsp of beni shoga, which is a pickled red ginger. Mix all of these in until they are well blended.
Take a large skillet, and heat over medium heat.
Add in 1 tbsp of oil per okonomiyaki pancake, and spread the oil over the skillet. When the oil is hot, add half of the okonomiyaki batter, and using a spatula, for the pancake so that it is about 1 inch thick and 5 to 6 inches wide (this batter will make 2 pancakes of okonomiyaki).
Add 4 pieces of pork belly to cover the top of the pancake.
After 4 minutes, flip the pancake so the pork belly is facing down. Cook the other side for another 4 minutes.
Flip the pancake again so the pork belly side is up, and cook for 4 more minutes or until it is firm and well browned.
Repeat the same steps with the second pancake.
Drizzle both pancakes with okonomiyaki sauce and kewpie mayonnaise. Kewpie mayonnaise is made with rice vinegar instead of distilled vinegar, and has a smoother and creamier texture than regular mayonnaise.
Finally, add aonori, which is a green seaweed, and katsuobushi, which is dried bonito flakes. Enjoy!