My first time having Okonomiyaki was with Mika when she lived with me. She used tasty bits of pork and cabbage. (Mmm...I miss her!) Growing up, Mika's mom would make it for her and her two sisters. Her mom would call them and they would all run and sit at the table to eat at least 3 of them hot off the stove. She says, "when I was a kid, yes I always asked my mother to cook and I could eat 3 - 4 pieces. (large ones!)" Hahaha
My second time having it was in Japan last summer with a sister, Reiko, and her family. It was late (after Awa Odori, a dance festival) and we had already eaten sushi, but we had to have authentic Okonomiyaki in Japan! It was her dad's famous recipe. Haha I really like this picture of him cooking it up for us, and you can see what it looks like in the second picture with Reiko's mom...
This is the ready made Okonomiyaki mix (Shrimp flavored) I used tonight in the center. From left to right, you've got your seaweed (comes with the mix), in the same bowl is sliced green onions, THE best tonkatsu sauce ever, chili flakes, and Japanese mayo (usually comes in a bag with a baby on it. Why? I don't know...Lots of food have random creepy children/babies on their packaging).
Okonomiyaki Mix (I cheated this time but next time I'll do it right!)Mix the water, eggs and the box mix (dry stuff, not green stuff) in a bowl and add the cabbage or other veggies in.
1 1/3 C water
1/2 large cabbage (or about 4 C shredded cabbage), or chives
1/2 lb shrimp, shelled, de-veined and pan fried, or cooked pork, sausage, etc.
Green onion, sliced
Ao-nori (green seaweed), came with the box mix
Katsuo-bushi (dried bonito flakes), so cool when you put it on something hot...it looks like it's dancing!
Heat oil in a pan at medium-high heat and pour about 1/3 C of batter with enough cabbage into the pan. Let it spread out and flatten the cabbage to spread it evenly within the batter.
Squish the shrimp in the top maybe 4-5 shrimpies. Let it cook like a pancake where the bottom gets cooked and you can start to see the top of the pancake start to look solid
Flip it! And let it sit until the cabbage and the pancake is cooked all the way through.
While still hot, turn it onto a plate (shrimp side up) and drizzle mayo, then tonkatsu sauce on top. Then sprinkle whatever toppings you want (I only used the seaweed, green stuff, and then green onions).
Box makes 6-8