Monjayaki

Monjayaki is a type of Japanese pan-fried batter with various ingredients. It is similar to okonomiyaki but monjayaki, a speciality of the Kanto region, is made with a dough more liquid than is okonomiyaki. The ingredients are finely chopped and mixed into the batter before frying. The mixture is far runnier than okonomiyaki, and it has a consistency comparable to a pool of melted cheese when cooked. It's then eaten directly off the grill using a small metal spatula. A great many monjayaki restaurants can be found in the Tsukishima district of Tokyo. Most also serve regular okonomiyaki.

Preparation:

Spread some cooking oil on a heated griddle.

Drop only the fillings to the griddle with a spoon, leaving the soup behind in the bowl. Stir-fry the fillings.
<<= This is the "Monja-soup".
Be cafeful not to spill it to the griddle.

When stir-frying the fillings, cut the cabbage in it into small pieces with spatulas. It makes the taste of cabbage spread to other fillings.

When the filling is cooked, make a doughnut shaped wall with it. You will pour the soup into it, so take your time and make a good one. Or else, the soup will spread all over the griddle.

Now, the "Monja-soup". Add some Worcester sauce, or soy sauce, depending on the fillings.

Pour the soup into the wall. Be careful not to let the soup break out.

If everything is OK, your monjayaki should look like this. If the soup is out of the wall, try to put it back using spatulas. Cook the soup in this conditon for 4 to 5 minutes.

White waterly soup will turn into transparent gel. It's almost done.

Now, mix the soup with the wall(fillings). Mix them all up, quickly, quickly !!

Spread the mixture thin.

Put some green laver and red pepper on as seasonings. And...monjayaki done and ready to eat !!

Eating:

 

How to eat monjayaki with special spatulas "HAGASHI"

We use very small spatulas specially made to eat monjayaki. There are called "HAGASHI" which literally means "peeler". First, press down a hagashi to the monjayaki.That part will be cooked more and...

sticks to the hagashi. Pull that portion away from the main part. Don't try to take large portion at a time.

Now a small portion of monjayaki is ready on the hagashi. Eat it off. It's scorch on monjayaki that is so delicious.

Even Japanese people are not used to eat food with hagashi, so they tend to eat monjayaki with chopsticks. But if you want a real monjyayaki experience, hagashi is indispensable.

Be careful with the temperature of the griddle. Monjayaki can be overcooked easily.