What is Takoyaki?
Takoyaki is a ball-shaped Japanese snack from the Osaka area that was first invented in the early 20th century. The word ‘takoyaki’ literally means grilled octopus. Made with a batter similar to that for pancakes, the main ingredient is the pieces of octopus added to each takoyaki ball.
The takoyaki maker that is used to make takoyaki usually looks like the featured image on the left. They are not expensive and easy to store and use even in smaller households. Takoyaki is now popular nationwide, and is usually one of the most recognizable dishes to overseas fans of Japanese cuisine as well! Its easy preparation process and shareable design make it popular for ‘takoyaki parties’!
Important Takoyaki Ingredients
The basic ingredients for takoyaki are the batter, diced octopus pieces and takoyaki sauce. Mayonnaise also is another commonly used sauce! It is recommended to add multiple ingredients into the batter with the octopus, such as green onion or pickled ginger.
In terms of nutritional value, takoyaki isn’t exactly a superfood! Fried with plenty of oil, a typical 6-piece takoyaki ball set is around 420 calories, and high in carbs and fats. For those trying to watch what they eat, you can slightly improve this by using less mayonnaise or takoyaki sauce toppings.
Takoyaki Preparation Video
Here is an instructional video that can help show you the basic steps for making your own takoyaki:
Other Takoyaki Maker Recipes
Now for something a little different. Here are a few samples of dishes that can be made with a takoyaki maker besides the standard takoyaki balls that they were made for.
|Vanilla oil||As needed|
Sweet Potato Balls
Different Kinds of Purchasable Takoyaki Makers
3 Plate-Type Takoyaki Maker
This takoyaki maker comes with three different interchangeable plates with which you can prepare other grilled dishes besides takoyaki. You could prepare whole meals of vegetables and meat to eat together with your takoyaki balls, all on the same machine!
18-Hole Round Takoyaki Maker
This round design is another common way that most takoyaki makers are made in Japan, along with the rectangular maker featured earlier in the article. Its small size makes it perfect for storage in small places.
Mega Takoyaki Maker
The size of this takoyaki maker may be hard to judge from this one image, but while there are only two holes in this ‘Mega Takoyaki Maker’, it is meant to make takoyaki balls that are 8.5cm large! Give this one a try if you want to make a true meal out of your takoyaki balls!
If you are interested in trying to make takoyaki for yourself, any of the takoyaki makers featured in this article would be a good start. As takoyaki was originally a cultural product of Osaka, we also recommend that you check out our Buyee Special Feature on Osaka goods from the link below, which will introduce you to other great merchandise from this region!