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 in wheat flour batter. They are both cooked on an iron griddle or “Teppan (鉄板)” and categorized as “Teppanyaki (鉄板焼き)“.
Okonomiyaki is popular compared to Monjayaki and commonly made in households in Japan. On the other hand, Monjayaki can be enjoyed in Okonomiyaki restaurants and some Dagashiya.
Monjayaki and Okonomiyaki
By the way, do you know how Monjayaki is different from the Okonomiyaki pancake? For those who have heard of Monjayaki before but know little about the Japanese food, today I will talk about the difference between Monjayaki and Okonomiyaki.
Wheat Flour Batter
Generally, the batter of Monjayaki is made by mixing wheat flour with Worcester sauce and “Dashi (出汁)” soup stock, so it is watery and runny.
On the other hand, Okonomiyaki batter usually consists of wheat flour, grated yam, eggs and water. Hence, it is plain in taste and close to pancake batter.
Typical ingredients for Monjayaki include finely cut cabbage, Beni Shoga red pickled ginger, Agedama tempura bits, Aonori seaweed powder, bite-sized squid meat, sakura shrimps, Mentaiko roe, bite-sized Mochi rice cake, and processed cheese.
Although Okonomiyaki pancake uses almost the same ingredients as Monjayaki, a wider variety of food materials can be prepared for Okonomiyaki, such as pork belly slices, bean sprouts, beef tendon, kimchi, and noodles.
Making and Eating Manner
Monjayaki is cooked on an iron griddle by mixing its watery flour batter with ingredients. Basically, one Monjayaki cake is eaten together with some diners. 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 usually mixed together with the flour batter, and the batter mixture is cooked in almost the same way as other pancakes. Once the Okonomiyaki 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.
As for Okonomiyaki, once the batter mixture is cooked through, Okonomiyaki sauce and mayonnaise are typically applied on the pancake.
Okonomiyaki sauce is similar to Worcester sauce, but it is thicker, richer and sweeter than Worcester sauce as the Japanese brown sauce contains various fruit purees in addition to vegetables.