Photo: Japan Vegan Town
Vegan takoyaki recipe adapted from Japan Vegan Town
Takoyaki, which translates to “octopus balls” in Japanese, is ubiquitous in markets all over Asia. The street food originates from Osaka, Japan and is traditionally made with an egg-rich batter ladled into small round pans and stuffed with cubes of octopus.
Today, plenty of varieties exist as modern day cooks have personalised the snack to their liking. So why not make a vegan version that uses no eggs nor any animal-based derivatives? Here, Japan Vegan Town has provided a recipe that’s as authentic as it gets.
It calls for two Japanese ingredients that can be omitted if they’re too difficult to find where you are: yamaimo powder and konjac in block form. The former is derived from a mountain tuber which adds chewiness to the batter while the konjac – or arrowroot which is cubed in the recipe – mimics the texture of octopus.
To truly attain the flair of the street food staple, drizzle okonomi sauce and vegan mayonnaise instead of the dipping sauce.
One thing that can’t be left out though, is the specialised takoyaki pan. Consider it a small investment, especially if it’s a recipe you’ll be making over and over again.
Time needed: 45 minutes
Servings: Makes 16 balls
For the dumpling filling
200g rice flour
3g potato starch
1.5g baking powder
A pinch of salt
5g corn flour
7g yamaimo powder
3g Japanese-style soup stock (powder)
150ml soy milk
1 king oyster mushroom
A pinch of salt
2 tsp sake
30g konjac block (konnyaku)
2 tsp of soy sauce
An appropriate amount of green onion
An appropriate amount of red pickled ginger
An appropriate amount of oil
5g Japanese-style soup stock (powder)
An appropriate amount of mitsuba or Japanese wild parsley
Cut the king trumpet mushroom into 1.5cm squares. Fry it in a pan and add a pinch of salt and sake.
Next, if you’re using konjac, first remove the lye. To do so, rinse the konjac and cut it into bite-sized pieces with a spoon. Rub the konjac pieces with salt and boil it in a saucepan for two to three minutes. Rinse and drain konjac in a fine-mesh sieve.
Put konjac in a hot pan, add soy sauce and then stir-fry.
Finely chop green onions and red pickled gingers.
Mix rice flour, potato starch, baking powder and salt in a large bowl and mix.
Put corn flour, yamaimo flour, Japanese-style soup stock, water, soy milk in another bowl and stir until dissolved. Once dissolved, transfer it into the large bowl in step 5. Then, mix until frothy.
Heat the takoyaki pan and oil each hole.
Spoon in the batter to overfill the cups. Place mushrooms and konjac in the centre of each cup.
As it starts to cook, sprinkle the green onions and gingers on top.
After a minute, using your skewer or toothpick, grab the edge of the takoyaki ball and flip it over so the other side can start to cook. Keep continuously rotating them until they are completely round and golden brown.
For the dipping sauce, put the Japanese-style soup stock and water in a small saucepan and boil it. Then, add an appropriate amount of mitsuba or Japanese wild parsley.