The Difference: Monjayaki vs Okonomiyaki Pancake
“Monjayaki (もんじゃ焼き)” and “Okonomiyaki (お好み焼き)” are similar Japanese dishes consisting of various ingredients mixed in wheat flour batter.
They are both cooked on an iron griddle or “Teppan (鉄板)” and can be categorized as “Teppanyaki (鉄板焼き)“.
Okonomiyaki is more popular than Monjayaki and commonly made in households in Japan, while Monjayaki can be enjoyed in Okonomiyaki restaurants and some Dagashiya, but is hardly made at home.
Monjayaki vs Okonomiyaki
By the way, do you know how Monjayaki differs from Okonomiyaki pancake? For people who haven’t heard of Monjayaki yet, today I will talk about the difference between the dish and Okonomiyaki.
Wheat Flour Batter
The batter of Monjayaki is usually made by mixing wheat flour with Worcester sauce and dashi stock, so it is watery and runny.
On the other hand, Okonomiyaki batter typically consists of wheat flour, grated yam or Tororo, eggs, and water. Hence, it is plain in taste and close to pancake batter.
Representative ingredients for Monjayaki include finely cut cabbage, Beni Shoga (red pickled ginger), Agedama (tempura bits), Aonori (green seaweed powder), bite-sized squid meat, sakura shrimps, Mentaiko roe, bite-sized Mochi (rice cake), and processed cheese.
Okonomiyaki pancake uses almost the same ingredients as Monjayaki, but a wider variety of food materials tend to be prepared for Okonomiyaki, such as pork belly slices, bean sprouts, beef tendon, kimchi, and noodles.
Cooking and Eating Manner
Monjayaki is cooked on an iron griddle by mixing its watery flour batter with other ingredients. Basically, some diners eat a single Monjayaki cake together. They enjoy crispy bits and ingredients directly from the griddle using a small iron spatula.
As for Okonomiyaki, prior to cooking, ingredients, except raw meat, are mixed together with flour batter, and the batter mixture is cooked on Teppan in almost the same way as other pancakes. Once the batter is cooked through, it is cut into small pieces and served to diners one by one.
Okonomiyaki Pancake with Okonomiyaki Sauce and Mayo
Since Monjayaki batter is seasoned with Worcestershire sauce before cooking, there is no additional sauce for Monjayaki.
Meanwhile, as for Okonomiyaki, after the batter mixture is cooked through, Okonomiyaki sauce and mayonnaise are usually applied to the pancake.
Okonomiyaki sauce is similar to Worcester sauce, but it is thicker, sweeter, and richer in taste than Worcester sauce as the Japanese brown sauce contains various fruit purees in addition to vegetables.