Takoyaki is one of my favourite Japanese street food, it is a type of dumpling filled with baby octopus, cabbage, spring onions and pickled ginger. It is then cooked in a takoyaki pan then served with takoyaki sauce, mayonnaise, aonori and katsuobushi (dried bonito shavings).
It was invented by Tomekichi Endo in 1935, he popularized it in the streets of Osaka and was inspired from Akashiyaki which is a softer variant, contains more eggs and is dipped in dashi. If you noticed it has the common prefix (yakitori and yakisoba) and suffix (teppanyaki, teriyaki and sukiyaki) that other Japanese dishes also used which is “Yaki”, a term derived from “yaku” that describes a cooking method which is to fry or grill.
A very good side dish to Japanese dishes or even as a snack, these dumplings are so soft and tasty. This is one of my addictions, when I see this in Japanese restaurants and even in Japanese food stalls I am always tempted to buy a serving or two. Best enjoyed straight from the pan while they are very hot.
1 cup cake flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp sugar
2 cups dashi stock (you can dilute 2 tbsp instant dashi powder in 2 cups of water)
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped baby octopus
4 tsp spring onions, finely chopped
4 tsp chopped pickled ginger, finely chopped
4 tbsp cabbage, finely chopped
1. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, sugar in a mixing bowl. Add eggs and dashi stock and mix until it forms a smooth batter. Cover bowl with cling wrap then set aside and let it rise for 30 minutes.
2. Lightly brush takoyaki pan with oil, heat up the pan using low heat. Pour batter into the pan up to the rim then add 2 pieces of baby octopus slices, pinch of ginger, cabbage and green onions in the middle.
3. Once the batter rises, using a toothpick loosen the dumplings and flip it to the other side. Don’t worry about the shape, it will set in the bottom and finally creating a full sphere.
4. Once the other side sets, loosen it again with toothpicks then keep on rotating for 5 minutes or until dumplings are golden and crispy.
5. Once cooked place in plate brush with takoyaki sauce, top with mayonnaise and dried bonito flakes.