Waffles are currently having a hot minute on social media. Preferring savoury over sweet, hash browns were my gateway to this new craze. Craving a one-dish meal with more veggies, I wondered if the classic Japanese pancake (okonomiyaki) could be wafflised. Spoiler alert: they do!
The recipe below worked perfectly. Though an old stovetop waffle maker like mine necessitates flipping them over to cook both sides, it’s still quicker than making okonomiyaki the usual way.
This version is adapted from Hetty McKinnon, to make one egg, single serves. It’s a flexible recipe and a great way to turn wilted end-of-the week veggies into a quick and tasty lunch. In this case it was cabbage and grated zucchini that had seen better days but tasted as good as new in waffle form, with a dab of mayo and a sprinkle of my homemade furikaki.
Quantities per person/about 2 waffles
1/2 cup plain flour
90 ml (just over 1/3 cup) dashi or vegetable stock
1/4 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt – depending on how salty the dashi/stock is (optional)
1.5 cups of finely shredded or grated vegetables, eg: cabbage, Brussels sprouts, sweet potato, potato, broccoli, zucchini, potato and/or cauliflower
1 spring onion finely chopped (if you have it)
1 egg, lightly beaten
Vegetable oil to grease the waffle iron.
Furikake, toasted sesame or finely sliced spring onion greens
Slice or grate the vegetables finely. The waffles don’t cook for long, so the finer the better.
Mix together flour, stock (or dashi), baking powder and salt (if needed) in a large bowl, to form a batter. I usually add the egg at this stage, though Hetty suggests adding it with the vegetables.
Add the vegetable to the batter, mix well for at least 30 secs. Add the egg (if you haven’t already) and gently mix it in, until all the ingredients are combined without being over worked.
Heat your waffle iron and if it’s not non-stick, brush or spray on some vegetable oil. Once hot, add a tablespoon or two (depending on the size of your waffle maker) of the veggie batter and flatten a little with the back of the spoon. You want to get towards the edges without it overflowing when you put the top down.
Cooking time will vary on the type of iron. It’s worth checking after 2 minutes, to see if the waffle is brown. Once its cooked, remove (or flip if it’s a stovetop iron).
Okonomiyaki are traditionally served with its own special sauce (found in some Asian grocery stores or DIY) and mayonnaise, topping the pancake in lines from a squeezy bottle. Often they are finished with bonito flakes, which wave or ‘dance’ on top with the heat of the pancake.
I’m not a fan of the sweet/tangy sauce, so I serve them with mayo and a sprinkle of furikake instead.
Hetty’s original Insta post includes kimchi – which sounds absolutely delicious!
The recipe can be veganised replacing eggs with ‘flax eggs’/ flax seeds or similar. Kewpie now make a vegan/egg-free mayo, or use your favourite plant-based brand. Be aware that som Japanese okonomiyaki sauces contain animal products.
Gluten-free – sub GF flour or try rice flour (don’t forget the baking powder).
This recipe is vegetarian and can be adapted for gluten-free or vegan. Explore the recipe archive for more meal inspirations.