Today I had a most delicious flavor adventure on my lunch break. I took a trip to the East Village to a little place called OTAFUKU! Their specialty is JAPANESE STREET FOOD.
They only have a few items on their menu. I went for their famous okonomiyaki and takoyaki. Okonomiyaki is a pan-fried savory treat that is part omelette, part pancake, and part pizza. It is sometimes called Japanese Pizza. It is made with shredded cabbage, eggs, ginger, flour, scallions and then topped with beef, pork, squid, or shrimp. Takoyaki translates to fried octopus and are small dumplings (think donut holes) made from batter and scallions and when cooking a piece of octopus is dropped inside. They are then topped with okonomi sauce (very sweet and kind of tangy), mayonnaise sauce, dried seaweed and a generous sprinkle of dried bonito flakes (which look like powdery bacon but is actually tuna).
Here is a crappy camera shot of my tasty treats. Let me suggest that you should get this food when you have time to sit down and enjoy it while it is HOT. Taking it back to your busy office is not a good idea. Needless to say, the okonomiyaki was AWESOME!!!!! Really filling and cheap (my combo cost 8.00!). The combo of cabbage and eggs and beef was very pleasing for my palate. I was a bit scared of the takoyaki because I had never eaten Octopus. But it was very similar to calamari (squid!) and wasn’t scary at all really. Plus, the takoyaki are so darn cute….who could resist???
Here’s where to GRUB IT UP!
OTAFUKU – 236 E. 9th St., New York, NY 10003 (212) 353-8503