A dorayaki, it’s a set of 2 pancakes filled with anko (azuki bean jam). For the seasonal touch, kuri (chesnut) is added to the anko.
Remark : this is not the type of breakfast pancake that are served hot and eaten as soon as they are made. Usually, dorayaki are bought in specialized shops or prepared in advance. They are served cold, at tea time. They can be kept a few days (with or without refrigeration, depending on filling), and also brought to friends in a nice gift box.
Of course, no law says you cannot eat them fresh and hot. I think it’s not done because there exist many cousin hot cakes sold in Japanese street stalls :
There are new styles of dorayaki, fluffier, with other fillings. Today is classic, with baking soda and a dash of soy sauce in the batter.
Quest of the perfect shape.
Bits of kuri (Chinese sweet chestnuts) added to tsubu-an. A little honey and brandy for flavor.
The tigered are called tora-yaki (tora is tiger). They are popular in Osaka as the local base-ball team is the Hanshin Tigers.
Even cats can be tigered.
HOW TO ?
THE BATTER (Old Fashion style)
This recipe is a retro version, slightly reduced in sugar.
50 g of egg (1 egg, M size),
25 g of sugar (yellow cane sugar),
1 ts of honey,
a few drops of soy sauce (or a pinch of salt),
2 ts of water.
50g of flour
1/2 ts of baking soda.
-Beat the sugar and egg with a whisk, till a white foam appears, add the other liquids while beating.
-Mix well the powders with a second whisk. Sift on top of eggs while whisking.
-Beat well. You should get a creamy smooth batter. Add a little water if it’s too thick.
WAIT 1 HOUR
-Check the texture. It is too thick usually, add a little water 1 tbs at a time to obtain a creamy and nearly fluid batter. Stir slowly with a spoon.
SLOW COOKING ON A HOT-PLATE :
To have a perfect surface and brown color on one side, the Japanese bakers make them on an electric (teflon style) hot plate, at 140 degrees C. It’s low heat. I used a sauce-pan, it’s slower as I had to do 1 by 1 (for nice shape), while they can do 6 on a familial okonomiyaki plate, and maybe 30 on the plates they use in shops.
The pan/plate has to be warm, then pass a piece of kitchen paper with oil. Don’t let any drop of oil. The drops cause the irregularities of color.
Pour 1 spoon of batter in the middle, not more, it will spread in a circular shape by itself. If it’s too small, use a bigger spoon for the next ones.
Cook at low (middle) heat. You can put a lid to go quicker. That took me 3 minutes per side.
FILLING AND SHAPING :
The last trick is they take 2 hot pancakes from the the plate, fill them immediately, then squeeze them a few seconds in their hands to make the curvy shape like a dora (gong). The cakes will keep the shape when they cool down.
I was not able to do that perfectly because when my second pancake is cooked, my first one is already cold. LOL