Okonimiyaki is a very popular dish in Japan. Osaka-style okonomiyaki is prepared much like a pancake. The batter and other ingredients usually things like cabbage, ginger, green onion, pork and squid are fried on both sides on a hot plate using metal spatulas that are later used to slice the dish when it has finished cooking. Cooked okonomiyaki is topped with sweet, thick brown okonomiyaki sauce, seaweed flakes, fish flakes and Japanese mayonnaise.
In Hiroshima, the ingredients are layered rather than mixed together. The amount of cabbage used is usually 3 to 4 times the amount used in the Osaka style. It starts out piled very high and is pushed down as the cabbage cooks. The order of the layers may vary slightly depending on the chef's style and preference, and ingredients will vary depending on the preference of the customer.
We a hard time finding the restaurant because it was hidden on some secret second level of a building. But we really wanted to try the Hiroshima-yaki, so we didn’t give up. Taking the escalator up from the first floor actually landed us on the third floor instead of the second, very peculiar. We had to explore the third floor a bit to discover the secret stairs down leading the the illusive second floor. And finally the restaurant famous for its delicious okonomiyakis.
Okonimiyaki supposedly originated in Osaka but the people from Hiroshima claim that they know the correct way to make okonomiyaki. And I think I prefer the Hiroshima way, it’s less mealy, more crunchy and I couldn’t detect any ginger. The Dutchies loved their okonomiyakis too and Yasu is always happy when he’s eating okonimiyaki. A good birthday dinner!