Monjayaki (もんじゃ焼き) is another popular Japanese local food that is famous in the Kanto region / Japan’s capital, Tokyo. Monjayaki is quite similar to Okonomiyaki, the only difference is the consistency of the batter used and how it is cooked on the teppan grill. Below we break down how to properly cook monjayaki.
Where to eat Monjayaki
Normally, people in Japan eat Monjayaki at restaurants whose specialty is the dish such as “もんじゃや 紋” / Monjaya in Ueno-Okachimachi. They also have an English menu available.
This kind of restaurant has dining tables that are equipped with an iron griddle or “teppan” and customers are served with ingredients to cook the dish by themselves.
Okonomiyaki and monjayaki have almost the same ingredients used, it usually contains, shredded cabbage, green onions and seafood. Pork and cheese can also be added depending on your choice. Compared to okonomiyaki, monjayaki‘s batter is much runnier, the batter is a combination of water and dashi stock.
Monjayaki – first impression
If you made your research in advance you might be shocked and disappointed on how the actual monjayaki looks like. Honestly, it doesn’t look appealing and you might even say “it looks gross!” but surprisingly it tastes delicious!
To fully enjoy your monjayaki experience you must know how to properly cook monjayaki, let’s proceed to the steps on to properly cook monjayaki.
How to Properly Cook Monjayaki
Spread oil on the iron plate/teppan grill, wait until it is hot enough to cook on. Add the ingredients by scooping it from the bowl. Place the cabbage first followed by the remaining ingredients except for the liquid stock.
Do not pour over all the bowl’s ingredients!
Using the spatulas mix and stir-fry the ingredients together for about 2 minutes.
Form the ingredients into a donut shape on the teppan grill, make sure you leave a circular space in the center for the stock.
Before you pour in the liquid stock, you can add additional soy sauce, salt, and pepper into the stock. Pour in the liquid stock into the center of your donut-shaped ingredients and wait for the batter to boil.
TRY to keep the donut shape intact throughout the process.
Once the batter starts to boil, mix all the ingredients gradually and spread it across on the teppan grill. Continue mixing until the liquid batter reduces.
Once the liquid batter is reduced you can then start to scoop it off using a small spatula-like spoon called “hera” to eat.
Hope you enjoy your Monjayaki experience!