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Okonomiyaki is hugly popular in Japan. This savoury pancake makes the perfect comfort meal, made from okonomiyaki flour, dashi stock, eggs and an obligatory cabbage filling, plus whatever protein you have to hand.
Preheat the oven to 100°C/gas mark ¼ and warm a plate to keep the okonomiyaki warm while you make them. In a large bowl, mix together the flour and 200ml water. Add the cabbage to the batter, then the spring onions, prawns, ginger and tenkasu balls, if using. Add the eggs and mix everything together gently.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a lidded frying pan over a medium heat. Pour in half the okonomiyaki mixture and flatten it with a spatula to form a round pancake about 1.5cm thick. Cook for
5 minutes or until golden, covering the pan with the lid to ensure it is evenly cooked. Flip over and cook, again covered, for a further 5 minutes. Keep warm. Repeat with the remaining mixture. Serve with mayo and okonomiyaki sauce drizzled over in ribbons and bonito flakes, aonori seaweed and pickled ginger scattered decorously.
To make okonomiyaki sauce, put 100ml dashi stock in a pan over a medium-high heat. Add 5 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, 2 tablespoons tomato ketchup, 2 tablespoons tomato purée, 2 tablespoons tamarind paste, 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce, 2 tablespoons apple juice, 1 teaspoon brown sugar and 1 teaspoon honey. Bring to the boil, stirring well to prevent it catching on the base of the pan. Put 2 teaspoons cornflour in a bowl and stir in 3 teaspoons cold water. Add the cornflour mixture a little at a time to the hot mixture, stirring well. Cook over a low heat for 5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened to the consistency of a glossy ketchup. Leave to cool, then transfer to a jug. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
Recipe from 'Flipping Good!: Pancakes From Around The World' by Saudi Pigott. Published by Kyle Books (RRP $AU19.99).
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