Takoyaki is one of the most popular street snacks in Osaka. Little roadside stalls can be found everywhere, ready to serve up a batch of takoyaki when you need it most. But for the freshest, tastiest takoyaki, the best thing to do is to make it yourself.
To cook takoyaki, you'll need to use a special metal takoyaki mould (usually non stick), which are available at Japanese markets. These crispy golden takoyaki balls of deliciousness are super easy to tweak to your preferences. If you don't like octopus, you can substitute it with precooked bacon, ham, sausage or prawn. Try making it. These ball-shaped dumplings are fun to make with your friends and family!
Waiting for these pillowy morsels to brown
My takoyaki mould - all oiled and ready to go!
You'll never stop at just one
- Plain/all-purpose flour: 1 1/2 cups
- Cornflour: 1 tablespoon
- Peeled and grated yamaimo (type of Japanese yam): 1/3 cup
- Eggs: 3
- Dashi stock: 1 1/4 cups
- Toasted sesame oil: 2 - 3 tablespoons
- Precooked octopus, cut into about 1/2 inch cubes: 100 grams
- Spring onions, chopped: 1/4 cup
- Okonomiyaki / Worcestershire sauce: 2 tablespoons
- Aonori (powered nori seaweed) (optional): 1 tablespoon
- Dried, shaved bonito: 1 tablespoon
- Make the batter by whisking together the flours, yamaimo, eggs and dashi until smooth.
- Dip a wad of kitchen towel into the sesame oil and wipe the insides of the takoyaki pan to coat the entire surface, then place the pan over low heat. Preheat for about 2 minutes. When the pan is ready, pour batter into each mould to fill it three-fourths full. To each mould, add about 2 pieces of octopus. Add more batter to each mould until they are full.
- Cook for about 3 minutes. Carefully flip each takoyaki using chopsticks or a skewer. Cook for 3 more minutes. At this point, the takoyaki should be nicely browned all over and feel springy and pillowy.
- Use chopsticks or a skewer to transfer the takoyaki to a plate. Squeeze some mayonnaise and okonomiyaki sauce over the takoyaki in ribbons, sprinke on the aonori and dried, shaved bonito, and serve.
- You can find yamaimo at Japanese markets, but if it's not available, just follow the recipe without it. The takoyaki will come out a little fluffier than springier, but will still be delicious.
- If you don’t like octopus, feel free to substitute your own favourite fillings. How about crispy fried bacon pieces, prawns, chicken, tofu or cheese?
- For something completely different, ditch the savoury ingredients and go for a sweet version! Why not try adding chocolate for ‘chokoyaki’! Jams or other sweet ingredients would also work well. You might like to replace the dashi in the batter with water.