Okonomiyaki: Japanese Pizza
I love pizza and any and all variations of it. I’ve already written about Zapiekanki (Polish pizza) and today I’m sharing a recipe for Japanese pizza from 101cookbooks, which I find myself making over and over again. While it’s not completely authentic (I think real okonomiyaki includes dashi broth), the great thing about this is that it couldn’t be faster to throw together and is extremely customizable. All you need is shredded cabbage (or other veggies you think would go well) and flour plus eggs to hold it together. I usually make it with just cabbage and carrots, but this time I decided to follow Heidi’s recipe and use leeks. Since I’m very sensitive to the taste of onions, I really had to push myself to do this, and compromised by sauteing the leeks beforehand in order to take that raw edge off. They ended up having a very slight, sweet and subdued oniony taste, which was just enough to add flavor to the pizza without taking over, and next time I won’t even think twice about including them. If you don’t like cabbage you can experiment with shredded broccoli or brussel sprouts, but I agree with Heidi and think this can turn anyone into a cabbage fan!
adapted from 101 cookbooks
- 2 cups cabbage
- 1 cup leeks
- 2/3 cup flour (I used whole wheat)
- few pinches of sea salt
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 Tb EVOO [extra virgin olive oil]
- Additional toppings of choice: toasted almonds, herbs, cheese. I’ve also used this pizza as a sandwich base, topping it with prosciutto, turkey, or smoked salmon.
1) Clean leek well. Slice lengthwise, but not all the way through the ‘bearded’ end. Can slice again, so that you have four layers of flaps. Now submerge them in a bowl of water and make sure to wash out any trapped dirt. Discard toughest outer dark green leaves and slice up into rounds. Saute in 1 Tb EVOO for a few minutes till just a tiny bit browned.
2) Combine cabbage, leeks, flour and salt in a bowl. Stir until everything is covered by the flour.
3) Add beaten eggs and stir till evenly coated.
4) Heat large skillet over medium heat and add EVOO. Add mixture to pan, and flatten as much as you can. Cook 4-5 minutes. You want it to be golden.
5) Flip the pizza! The safe way to do this is to slide it onto a plate, place another plate on top and flip, and next slide it back onto skillet (which may need more EVOO).
6) Flatten again and cook another 3-5 minutes.
7) Add toppings and cut into wedges.