You remember the time you ordered Takoyaki in a Japanese restaurant and they charge you $7 for only 5 pieces? And you can barely taste the octopus?
Why don't make great ones by yourself! The great thing is that you don't always need a fancy Takoyaki pan (although they are not expensive on Amazon at all), a cake pop pan will do the job just fine! I got my pan from BestBuy with a promotion for only $9.99, and I've made tons of takoyaki with it.
Step 1: Ingredients
1 cup Dashi (you can buy dashi stock or make your own, or just use water instead)
1 Green Onion
Takoyaki Sauce, Japanese Mayonnaise, Pickled Ginger, Dried Seaweed and Bonito Flakes to your own taste.
All the ingredients can be easily found in any Japanese market. Octopus is the key-- but if you don't like octopus, you can always use sausage, kimchi or any other ingredients that you like.
Step 2: Prepare Your Work
Cut your octopus into small pieces.
Mix the batter-- Put flour, egg and dashi (or water) toether to make a batter. Add salt or soy sauce to your own taste. Since here I used my homemade Dashi Stock, and I have already added salt to the stock, so I didn't add any more salt to the batter.
If your octopus is raw and it's not sashimi grade, you can boil them in hot water for a few seconds (don't boil them longer than 15s!)
Step 3: Pour in the Batter
Heat your takoyaki pan, or just turn on a cake pop pan like I did, when it's getting hot, wipe some oil inside for a crispy outside.
Pour in the batter and add the octopus...Oh yes, you can add as many octopus pieces as you wanted!
Step 4: Now You Gonna Need Some Technique
Well actually the technique for turning the takoyaki is not very hard-- you just need a few practices.
First add all the other ingredients you like, we added green onion and pickled ginger, sometimes we use kimchi and sausage as well.
Then you need to wait till the bottom is completely set, then turn the takoyaki with a long wood stick (you can use long skewer or chopsticks) to turn them 90 degrees.
*Note: If you are using a professional takoyaki pan, then you can just wait a little bit and turn another 90 degree. But if you are using a cake pop pan like I did, you need to add some batter to the side as the hole is larger than a usual takoyaki pan.
Step 5: I Want You Crispy
When the ball is all set on the outside, you are not done yet.
Keep rolling after 30s each side to get all the side golden brown for a crispy contrast.
When they get to the stage you'd like, take them out and you can cut some seaweed on top (or you can use any other decorations for sure)!
Step 6: Season Them
Season the Takoyaki with Takoyaki sauce, Japanese Mayonnaise and put a large amount of bonito flakes on top of them.
Eat while it's still warm or hot!
Step 7: Now Enjoy!!
So much cheaper, and taste so much better than the one in restaurants-- you just need some good tako and that's it.
BTW the plate is an art design from a Japanese designer named Mika Tsutai, My boyfriend bought this in NY MOMA museum and I think it's a perfect match with takoyaki.
Hope you enjoy this recipe, and hope you vote for me in the Snack Contest!