okonomiyaki recipe

Mmmmm….. I had always seen pictures and heard of people eating okonomiyaki and after our friend Karim made it for dinner a couple of weeks ago, I knew I wanted to try making it myself. It turned out delicious! The leftovers were good too, but I’m not sure if my coworkers appreciated the smell of microwaved bonito flakes.

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This is the recipe we based it off of.

Ingredients

  • oil
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 egg
  • 2.5 cups (about) cabbage, cut into shreds
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 4 slices of leek, cut into strips (each slice was about 0.5 cm)
  • 4 slices bacon, cut into 2 cm by 2 cm pieces
  • bbq sauce
  • mayonnaise
  • bonito flakes
  • seaweed flakes

Directions

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  1. Mix flour, water, egg, cabbage, carrot, zucchini, leek and bacon in a large bowl. It should glue together but have a little bit of liquid at the bottom. If not, add some more water. You can always try a test one and then add more water.
  2. Heat oil in a pan.
  3. Pour some mixture in the pan in a circle (just over 1 cm thick). Try to make sure it’s in one “pancake” so it doesn’t fall apart and is easy to flip.
  4. Once it looks browned on one side, flip! Cook on other side until browned.
  5. Top with bbq sauce and mayonnaise in squiggles, and add bonito and seaweed flakes on top.
  6. Wave back to your okonomiyaki!

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Musings

  • Karim put squid in his okonomiyaki which I highly recommend! I think you could also use ham or prawns. Or possibly even leave it out?
  • Technically, okonomiyaki sauce (instead of bbq sauce) is more authentic, but it uses the same main ingredients. You could also use takoyaki sauce or make your own okonomiyaki sauce using worcestersire sauce.
  • The seaweed flakes we used this time were a bit too flavoured/salty for my liking. I would try to find crushed seaweed that is plain.
  • We used leek as it is in season here, but you can use green onion too! Then you could even sprinkle some green onion on top as well. Mmm
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3 of 3 picture posts: charleston & punakaiki

I am pining for when I’ll get to go back to Charleston! Dry weather is rare on the west coast, so I’ll have to keep crossing my fingers.

The swell was big when we were there.

IMG_0547 IMG_0549 IMG_0554What happens when you stand too close to the swell:

IMG_0568Baby’s first trad climb!

IMG_0560In general, it was very nice there (except for the sand flies).

IMG_0562 IMG_0569 IMG_0565 IMG_0555And the Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki. We wanted to make pancakes AT pancake rocks, but couldn’t find any pancake mix on the west coast. How strange. Guess we’ll have to go back (to try whitebait as well!).

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2 of 3 picture posts: mt hutt

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Mt Hutt was different than any other ski hill I’ve been to. It IS on a mountain, but to drive to it, it is flat… flat…more flat.. flat… flat POOF THERE’S THE MOUNTAIN WHERE DID THAT COME FROM?!? It meant that one side was really boring to look off of (plains) and the other side was very nice to look at (mountains!).

Please disregard the faulty-looking goggles. They are Lauren’s. I need to fix them. My goggles at home are falling apart as well.

IMG_0528As you can see, they are pining for snow. I’d say most of this is machine made. I can certify that this is correct because I spent half the time sliding down on my face.

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One reason why Mt Hutt > ANY other ski hill… they have a PIZZA SNOW CAVE!!!!

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1 of 3 picture posts: various

Here are some ultra-random photos from the past 2 months!

These two photos are from when I visited Pam (my first cousin, 3x removed) at her home in Otorohanga. She has 4 units on the side of her house that she rents out (good to stay at if you’re going to the Waitomo caves). I forgot to take a picture of all of us, so unfortunately that little picture is the best I have of Pam.

IMG_0510 IMG_0511We also went to the Otorohanga Kiwi House where we saw eels. Yuck.

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This was my view of the Kaikoura ranges on my flight from Auckland to Christchuch. I should have skiied earlier in the season as this was right after ‘the’ big dump of the season.

IMG_0513Here are 2 pictures of two climbing trips where we spent more time looking at the scenery than climbing. Hanging Rock really reminds me of Area 44 in Squamish.

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…. the time I made pumpkin curry using a WHOLE PUMPKIN!!!! Out of all the fruits & veg Fiji grows, pumpkin is the only piece of produce in NZ that I have noticed is CHEAPER in NZ. This baby sometimes only costs $1.

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Lastly, three pictures from Natalie’s gig last week:

Me and Natalie
Me and Natalie
Lauren, Natalie, Kota, Hugh
Lauren, Natalie, Kota, Hugh
Natalie (the singer)
Natalie (the singer)

exciting travel plans

If you are an avid Twitter-follower, you may have noticed this, but it is official now that Kat, Scott, Natasha and I will all be in Hawaii at the same time. This is going to be epic!!!!

I also officially have a flight back to Canada (took me a while to realize that). I’ll be on the same flight back with Kat & Scott to Vancouver arriving December 4th. Unsure of December plans yet, and whether I spent all of/part of December in Ontario or reading week (in February).

I am excited for all things in this post. PERMA-GRIN!!!

Hope no one was keeping this a secret because I got too excited and posted anyway. 🙂

mt hutt, okonomiyaki & charleston

As Kat mentioned, I have been attempting to master the office-weekday, outdoor-weekend routine! This past week was the first time since I left Fiji where I actually felt warm outside. The adventures are multiplying!

Last last week, I kicked off the weekend by dragging my coworker Andrew to the rock climbing gym with Lauren & Natalie. He said his arms were very sore afterwards. One thing I love about gym climbing is that you can do it with anyone! We also had delicious pizza at the Brewery (one was minced lamb with a yogurty sauce, and the other was blue cheese, meat and pear). I would like a stone oven in my house. Beside the food laminator (hehe).

Saturday involved treating ourselves at the market (duck eggs have massive yolks!!) and my friend Kota’s goodbye evening. We met at a bar and then went to a nearby asian restaurant. I had mapo tofu and it was SPICY!!!!!!! This restaurant is becoming quite a frequented place as it’s open really late and pretty cheap. And spicy. Then we went back to Karim’s house and tried many of Kota’s latest brewings (cherry, honey and passionfruit!) That was probably a bad idea. Sunday I went to Mt Hutt to go snowboarding! I had been warned that the ski fields here would be a bit disappointing, but I wanted to get out. The season has been very warm here and only one big dump of snow, so there snow machines have been working over time. I opted to board, and not ski, because it really doesn’t matter about the size or number of lifts because I spend half the time sliding down the hill on my face. I am a lot better at snowboarding now, and I didn’t fall off the charlift the entire day! I can go down blue runs, but only really slowly. I can connect about three turns and then I get too scared about how “fast” I am going. The snow was ok in the morning but got really yucky in the afternoon. That was okay though because I got really tired quite quickly.

I haven’t introduced Karim & Natalie yet – they let us stay at their house for a week when I first arrived in Christchurch 7 weeks ago. Natalie is a singer, and she’s awesome (and Australian-born). (some shameless promotion) She’s on the radio! (cool) This is a bit confusing because I also have a friend named Natalie, who is t at the uni. Karim is a school teacher and half-Kiwi, half-French. He’s a great cook.

The week was pretty regular, but I have to say I am climbing better than I ever have before! I’ve been doing better and better every week and I almost can do a pull-up (maybe I can now!! I haven’t tried in a couple weeks).

Thursday night, we had our last-last hoorah for Kota and Karim & Natalie made okonomiyaki, hijiki salad, a pickled vegetable to put on rice, and japanese coleslaw (except I forgot to try it because I was too busy stuffing my face). It was incredibly delicious!!! I am still dreaming about it, I think I may have to make it this week (time to buy another cabbage!). Then singer Natalie had a small gig, so we all went to that.

Theeeen this past weekend, Lauren and I decide evade the horrible weather in Christchurch and went to the west coast. (Easy peasy, narrow-New Zealand!) We packed the van with the destination of mind as sea cliffs in Charleston (just south of Westport). It was an absolutely beautiful area with the waves crashing against the rocks. You have to be careful though, don’t climb the rocks that are being crashed against! The swell was absolutely massive (3m!) so quite a bit of the climbing was off-limits and both of us, while belaying, got an ocean-shower by a rogue wave. You anchor yourself in at the bottom too so that if that did happen (unlikely) you won’t get washed away to sea. That’s not cool.

Lauren took a lot of time to teach me how to traditional climb (where you put in your own placements instead of clipping to bolts). It was easier and harder than expected. It made me think a lot. I successfully led a few climbs, the hardest one being an 11/5.4. In rock climbing language, this means flat. Here is an infographic where you can learn about climbing!

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We also visited the pancake rocks in Punakaiki and watched the blowholes (where water gets pushed through tunnels and splooshes up in a geyser-like formation), and camped beachside each night.

I took a lot of pictures so hopefully I can post them up soon!