This blog is the record of the Roy W. Howard National Collegiate Reporting Competition media tour through South Korea and Japan. The nine winners of the award, college journalists from across the country, will be updating this blog from the trip with written reports and photographs as they travel through Seoul, Osaka, Kobe and Tokyo. Stay tuned for up-to-the-minute news and reporting.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I can't wait to try the takoyaki in Osaka. Sometimes called "the quintessential comfort food," takoyaki are little balls of fried batter wrapped around boiled octopus, adorned with tempura scraps, pickled ginger, green onion, and then topped with okonomiyaki sauce, green laver (aonori), mayonnaise, and katsuobushi (fish shavings).

Both the Tokyo Earthquake of 1923 and the aftermath of World War II drove the Japanese to incorporate flour into certain dishes, as it was often provided for relief food, resulting in the creation of dishes like okonomiyaki, an egg-based savory pancake, and takoyaki.

An Osaka street vendor by the name of Endo Tomekichi is accepted as the inventor of takoyaki. It is a popular street food found most anywhere in Osaka, but a word of warning- the fried balls are deceivingly hot as the octopus retains high temperatures so bite with care.

"Takoyaki: Icon of Osaka" by Alan Wiren


Matt said...

I remember this food was mentioned in the early chapters of "Confucius Lives Next Door," right?

Amanda said...

Takoyaki is good! I had it from a street vendor in Tokyo - but I actually mostly just liked the octopus on the inside.