Osaka negiyaki, powered up.

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ねぎ焼き negiyaki
A fresh blog of the classic popular food of Osaka to replace or complete the old tuto.
Keep it really simple and don’t believe you need many ingredients, as it’s originally poor people cuisine, that was made with what was available that day. It’s easily made plant-based.

Here is a typical list of variations of negiyaki you can order in shops around here :

牛すじねぎ焼き gyusuji negiyaki (beef tendon)
豚ねぎ焼き buta negiyaki (pork)
イカねぎ焼き ika … (calamari)
えびねぎ焼き ebi … (shrimps)
豚キムチねぎ焼き buta kimchi … (pork kimchi)
牛すじキムチねぎ焼き gyusuji kimchi … (beef tendon kimchi)
牛すじもちねぎ焼き gyusuji mochi … (beef tendon mochi)
牛すじしょうがねぎ焼き gyusuji shoga …(beef tendon ginger)
ミックスねぎ焼き mix negiyaki …(=we’ll open the fridge and push everything there’s in into your dish)

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Check list :
negi leeks and nikomi (or any other)
-batter
-sauces and garnishing powders
-options : egg, tenkasu
-hot plate and oil

Osaka style :
Options and garnishing (negi and nikomi) are added to the batter at the last minute. Each guest chooses additions or not.

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Negi, scallions, Spring onions…. that’s the base of the dish. You need lots of negi greens. Cut thinly.

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This is konnyaku eringi ginger nikomi (recipe here).
I am probably the only person putting this in negiyaki. The classic version is : konnyaku gyusuji nikomi.
The gyusuji is beef tendon, with the meat that stays around, and that’s a very cheap cut of beef. It is prepared the same way I prepared the eringi. You can make some other meat or mushroom stew as you like.

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BATTER, gourmande style :
Grated nagaimo (about 1/2 cup), flour (1 cup), fish flakes. And enough water to get a creamy texture. Whip well.

Grating the yama imo

Veg’ version : skip the fish flakes, replace water by vegan kombu dashi (recipe here).
Gluten free version : replace flour by rice flour.
Imo free version : replace by grated potato or corn starch + a little baking powder.

Options :

They are not necessary for the classic version, but if you feel more hungry or like them, add what you want, that’s the rule of the game (okonomi = what you want). These 2, you read about on many blogs, they are often found in the rest of Japan, not so systematically here in Osaka :

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Egg. The reasons to not add to the original batter :
-some people don’t want egg (it’s the biggest allergy in Japan)
– texture, with egg, it would make it a harder pancake. In many shops, they add the egg whole egg onto the rest, already on the hotplate and break it and mix with chopsticks.

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Tenkasu. Tempura crumbles.

Others :
beni shoga pickled ginger,
kimchi,
raw meat, raw seafood,
mochi (rice cakes, use the tiny cubes arare, or thin slices),
tofu, cheese,
other veggies, sausage, ham, veggie pickles (tsukemono), salty seafood…

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Heat the hot plate (your skillet). Pass oil with a kitchen paper.

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MIXING :
In a bowl, put a cup of negi, 1/4 cup of nikomi, other options, a whole egg if you use it, a cup of batter. You can add more fish flakes if you wish. Mix roughly with chopsticks or a fork.

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COOKING
Pour everything on the plate, at middle heat. You can cover or not. When it’s all hardened, flip with 2 spatulas. (I cut it in 2 to flip with only one spatula… who cares ?).

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TOPPINGS :

All optional, as you like it, if you want some. A bare negiyaki is good too.

Sauce and mayo :

-the sauce is a thickened and sweetened worcester. The original sauce (called Ikari) was a copycat of LeaPerrins, sold to Kobe’s Brit expats.
Here I have a ready sauce, which is plant-based. If you don’t have it, LeaPerrins steak sauce is very similar. Or thicken the liquid classic worcester with corn starch (simmer a little, sweeten to taste) or by mixing with ketchup. Many shops make their sauce that way.Use a brush to paint it on the top.

-the mayonnaise. It is made more liquid by adding either milk, white wine or lemon juice. (to make easy egg mayo /// to make tofunaise).
To make nice drizzles, put the sauce and mayo in some plastic bottles with a tubular top. I don’t have that.

Variations :
-ketchup
shoyu (soy sauce, thickened)
ponzu (soy sauce + citrus juice)
-steak sauces

Powders (found in Japanese grocery stores) :
kezuribushi fish flakes, or fish powder
aonori seaweed
shichimi togarashi, 7 spice mix

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SERVING
When it’s cooked, put the heat on minimum, decorate.
Let on the plate while eating. Cut small wedges that you push toward guests that can heat directly from the plate, or on a small plate, while the rest stays hot.

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Chilled miso somen soup

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A very simply lunch, for a busy hot day.

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Boil a bundle of somen noodles. with 1/2 onion. Refresh in cold water. Put in a bowl cover with iced water.

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In a second pan, make a dashi stock with kombu seaweed and dry shiitake mushroom. Add veggies (okra, bell pepper, edamame). When they’re cooked, mix in a tbs of miso and refresh with ice-cubes.

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Combine the noodles and the soup. I’ve let the shiitake and I’ve cut a few ribbons from the piece of kombu seaweed.
Add toppings :

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Ribbons of nori seaweed cut from a sheet. The color is slightly purple as that’s raw nori (often for sushi, it’s grilled). I’ve also added sesame, chili flakes and sticks of peel of kinosu lime (the yellow bits).

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White waterfall (konnyaku noodles, shirataki)

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糸こんにゃく (itokonnyaku) or しらたき(shirataki). They are noddles made of konnyaku. Shirataki means white waterfall as that’s what they look like. And who doesn’t want to eat a fresh mountain torrent in this season ?

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Myoga, a veggie related to ginger. Delicious raw.

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The noodles are sold in bundles that can unfold or not if you want to cook them in a hot pot. I simply rinsed them in cold water.

That’s a food without calories and it’s popular in the West some diet extremists. I don’t eat konnyaku in order to stuff my face without getting the calories. The food is appreciated in Japan for its texture and the lack of flavor that allows you to match to any flavorful food. A perk is konnyaku fiber favors smooth digestion.
These noddles, served chilled are very refreshing.

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The tsuyu (dip sauce : dashi broth + soy sauce + mirin) with grated daikon radish. All the flavor comes from it so the tsuyu has to be coarse. I added green yuzu slices and the myoga.

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Natto with mustard.

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A small gaspacho.

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Bought black gomadofu (black sesame tofu). You can make yours (recipe). This one is sweet. I served as dessert it with a yamamomo berry.

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Oroshi udon, Kyoto style noodles

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Oroshi udon literally means grated udon. That’s not that the noodles are grated, but because some grated daikon radish (oroshi daikon) garnishes them. It’s very refreshing and many Japanese style fast-food offer this dish : chilled udon noodles, grated daikon and tsuyu sauce.

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細うどん hosoi udon, thin udon noodles. They are said to be Kyoto style udon, but they are popular in Osaka too. I think thicker udon is better for Winter dishes and these are more refreshing.

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The grated daikon radish, cut negi leek greens a few flakes of togarashi chili.

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It’s tsuyu.
I made a fish flake dashi (recipe here), flavored with soy sauce and a little brown sugar. Served chilled.

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卵焼きtamago yaki (Japanese omelet rolls) and okra.

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Cream water melon. Taste is like the red one.

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Black tofu and agedashi kyo-imo taro

Two small Japanese dishes, passed through the gourmande’s paws as usual. That’s not super original, but maybe you don’t know these two.

age-dofu (recipe here)
Agedashi is a classic way to prepare tofu, that means ageru (fry), then pour dashi (broth) on it. This time I made it with taro.

This is the Kyoto style taro, kyo-imo. I have peeled one, cut in a few rolls, boiled till tender. Then I’ve patted them dry and deep-fried till they get colored.

The dashi is the Japanese basic broth : DIY dashi recipe or plant-based kombu dashi.

I have left the fish flakes (you can omit them), added dry togarashi chili pepper, flavored with soy sauce and reheated slightly. I’ve added a little potato starch to thicken and poured on the hot kyo-imo.

Serve hot while it’s crunchy around.

I have used these black soy beans (kuromame) instead of the white. And I have proceeded exactly as I do for white tofu (recipes here).
It’s zaru tofu, shaped in a basket.

Topped with kezuri-katsuo (fish flakes), and at the side soy sauce to pour on it.

You’ll see the rest of the menu in the next post… (soon here)

Tanuki soba and big kabu turnips


A hot Japanese soup. Soba are buckwheat noodles. The tanuki is a Japanese raccoon dog.

tanuki ezo-tanuki, Northern white tanuki (image source, a blog with nice animal photos)

I’ve not been hunting. This dish is nearly vegan (you can use vegan broth). In Osaka, tanuki soba means a soba soup garnished with a slice of abura-age. In other places in Japan, they may give it a wrong appellation. Maybe it evokes the color of the fur of a tanuki. Or it’s because it’s tanukis’ favorite dish when they dine out in town…

Thin abura-age, it’s fried tofu slices. I bought them. Before adding them to the soup, I wipe away the excess of oil and slightly toast them.

Kabu are Japanese turnip. They can be pearly white, either small or huge. And more rarely red skinned.

Slices of the red kabu, kabu greens, cabbage, carrot, onion… All that is covered with dashi stock.
Classic dashi
kombu seaweed dashi (vegan)
DIY soba noodles
other soba recipes

Japanese warming soup with mini daikon


A little tutorial of Japanese cuisine today. It’s a soup with sake lees that has the property of warming up the body. It’s ideal for the cold season.

I like daikon, the huge Japanese white radish… but my favorite bit is the leaves. So I’m very happy with this type.

Very small radishes, sweet and tasty.

Tons of greens !

Other recipes with this plant :
Daikon sesame unohana (click here for recipe)
Mini-daikon miso soup
Nameko eggs with daikon leaves
Water tsukemono with mini daikon
Leafy miso

nanakusa okayu

Besides the mini daikon, I had cooked kabocha pumpkin, onion, dry shiitake mushrooms. Then tofu and sakekasu.

酒粕 sakekasu is a by product of sake making. It arrives on the market in this season. The taste ? It’s like unsweetened goat cheese with a little sake… Well, you should try.

Amazake, a drink with sake kasu

Sake kasu soup recipe

1. Dashi stock : put a 1 tbs of dry fish flakes (kezuri katsuo) and water, bring to a boil.
2. Season with soy sauce and miri, simmer a few minutes.
3. Add veggies or whatever items you want (optional, veggies, fish and tofu are common choices)
4. At the end, cut the stove and blend in the sake kasu paste. Slightly reheat without boiling, and serve.

For vegan dashi stock click here.

This is the way to blend in pastes into Japanese soup. The technique is similar for miso. We have this set “sieve + spoon” but you can get them separately. Put pate in the sieve, plunge it in the stock and stir with the spoon till all the paste has melted in.

So I’ve cooked progressively the onions, then the radish, then the leaves and just reheated the tofu and kabocha, finishing with the paste.

Dozo meshi agare !