vegan tofu takoyaki recipe! (source)
toothpick or skewer
canola oil for greasing
2 C Vegan takoyaki powder mix
2 Cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 C cold dashi stock (water soaked with konbu OR mixed with instant konbu granules)
2 Tbsp oil
extra cold water (if needed)
Konnyaku* block (not noodles), cut into squares (or mushrooms halves)
Red pickled ginger, chopped
Green onions, chopped
Tempura bits (tenkasu), optional
Takoyaki/okonomiyaki/tonkatsu sauce (whichever you can find vegan will do)
Nori powder (fine cut seaweed)
Preheat the takoyaki pan. Traditionally, over the stove, or turn on the electric type.
1. Stir all the batter ingredients together. It should be a runny medium batter, if not, add the cold water little by little.
2. Grease the takoyaki pan with a paper towel dipped in oil.
3. Spoon in the batter to overfill the cups.
4. Place a square of konnyaku in the center of each cup.
5. As is starts to cook, sprinkle the ginger and onions and tempura bits on top.
6. Now comes the tricky part. Turning. After a minute, using your skewer/toothpick, you grab the edge of the takoyaki ball and flip it over half way so the other side can start to cook. Pick up the spilled over filling and shove it in there too. Keep continuously rotating them until they are completely round and golden brown.
7. Once they are golden and firm, place them on your plate. Drizzle your sauce and mayo on top, with a sprinkling of nori flakes. You are ready to eat!
Ramen - Naruto
Guess who’s back! I finally have enough time and energy to make up some more recipes, and what better recipe to celebrate than some ramen? I got a lot of suggestions for this one, and I understand why. When I was big into Naruto, those hot steaming bowls of ramen seemed like the absolute perfect meal. However, back then, I didn’t understand the difference between those, and what came out of Top Ramen packets. Now, I’m still using the Top Ramen noodles, but I’ve added a lot more traditional ramen elements. And even if the noodles and stock aren’t 110% authentic, it’s still delicious. Believe it!
(If you’re really looking for a from-scratch-as-traditional-as-you-can-get, I’m planning on making up that recipe a bit later. Be forewarned, it’s a bit time consuming)
- 2 Packages of Top Ramen
- About 5 cups of pork or beef broth (You can use the stuff in a box, the stuff in a can, or the cubes or the paste)
- Pork tenderloin
- 2 Eggs
- 1 Baby bok choy
- 1 Green onion
- Soy sauce
- Aburage - that’s those brown sticks on the right side of the bowl, it’s a type of soy product that’s used when you make inari-zushi. It’s some of my favorite stuff, and you should be able to find it at an Asian food store.
- Nori - I forgot to put this is mine, but it’s those black/green sheets sticking out of the back. You’d probably be able to find this at any grocery store with an Asian foods section
- Kamaboko - This is that white thing with the pink swirl. Its made of a sort of fish paste that is steamed into like a cake. I know it’s kind of distintive in the Naruto ramen, but I didn’t have time to go and grab some from an Asian food store (which is where you’d have to get it).
- Marinate the tenderloin for at least 3 hours. You can use just soy sauce, or a mixure of whatever other Asian sauces you want. Teriyaki would be good, as would some mirin.
- Preheat your oven to 450, then cook the tenderloin for 12-15 minutes, or until cooked all the way through.
- Put your eggs in a pot with enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil and cover with a lid. It should take about 10 minutes to hard boil the eggs. Then pull them out and put them into a bowl of cold water to cool.
- While this is happening, pour or mix the stock/broth in a pot and bring it to a simmer. You can add soy sauce or mirin to taste.
- Once simmering, add the Top Ramen noodles. Do NOT add in the flavor packets. Let that cook.
- Now, we cut up all the toppings! Peel the eggs and slice them in half, cut the pork, kamaboko, bok choy, aburage, and green onion into thin slices.
- Serve up the noodles and broth in a nice deep bowl, then place all the ingredients in groups on top, and add in a few small rectangles of nori. Iketakimasu!
Chicken “Katsu” Curry Ramen
This has become my standard method as of late of upgrading cheap watery Top Romen soup into something that feels more like a full hardy meal. I recently came upon a seemingly endless bag of friend chicken patties, and I wanted to figure out creative ways to get rid of them while hiding their flavorless processed sponge anatomy.
A little inspired by runnyrunny999’s curry soba recipe, one could opt to simply toss one of those curry cubes to thicken and flavor typical ramen broth, or pre-make a large batch of thick curry sauce and add a bit of it to a bowl near the end, but the method that follows is probably the best for quick single servings.
- Toss chicken patty in the toaster, it usually takes at least 10-15 minutes to go from frozen to crispy so it’s best to start this first.
- Cut some bacon into bite sized pieces, I go for 2 or 3 strips, along with one crushed garlic clove, and fry in a small sauce pan over medium high heat until most of the fat renders out. I like to pepper the bacon at this point too. If you’re not into bacon, start with a tablespoon of butter or olive oil instead.
- Mix an equal amount of flour to the fat, slightly more if you want your sauce extra thick, and stir constantly until it no longer looks dry (add extra oil if necessarily for this) and it begins to turn slightly golden in color.
- Take the pan off the heat and pour in a teaspoon of curry spice mix. Any generic can of “curry powder” will do, I’ve found the one they sell at Trader Joe’s is pretty good. While continuing to stir quickly, gradually pour in the recommended amount of water for ramen broth.
- Return the pan to medium heat, toss in the ramen flavor packet (any flavor is good for this, beef or oriental might be best but in the end it only makes a subtle difference) as well as the noodles, and stir occasionally while gently letting it come to a boil. By the time the sauce thickens the noodles should be done too.
- Bowl it all up, and while it cools thinly slice one green onion to garnish, take out the hot crispy chicken and chop into strips, laying them on top of the noodles and sauce which should be just thick enough to barely support their weight.
Like all ramen dishes, the best part getting to customize it with extra ingredients, toppings and condiments to your liking. Here are just a few suggested extras I feel would go best with this dish:
- To spice things up, I know most will opt to go for the tried and true Sriracha, and that’s good and all, but some alternative options I feel better compliment the flavors here are shichimi (added on top while serving), cayenne powder (added with the curry powder), or my most favorite recent discovery gochujang, Korean red pepper paste, a heaping tablespoon of which tossed in the pan just before pouring in the water.
- Various sauces to top the chicken with, such as tonkatsu sauce obviously. I drizzled some spicy peanut vinaigrette (pictured) and it complimented everything surprisingly well.
- Mayonnaise. cuz they sometimes top curry with mayo, right? (they mentioned it on Nichijou, thats good enough for me)
- Sesame seeds, the darker the better
- Diced bell peppers, onions, carrots, and tomatoes
- Chopped herbs such as cilantro, parsley, or thai basil.
- cabbage, or kimchi if you’re into that.