Do you like takoyaki (octopus dumplings)? The secret to the origin of Osaka’s takoyaki lies about 50km west of Osaka in the fabled tamagoyaki (rolled omelette) of Akashi City, Hyogo Prefecture. Unlike the regular stuff found in every Japanese bento box, this is made by pouring eggs and soup stock in a specially shaped frying pan and putting octopus on top. As it also comes with soup to dip the steaming hot tamagoyaki in, you have an abundance of soup to enjoy.
First, I visited Kanehide in the Uonotana shopping district.
Just as you would expect at a tamagoyaki shop, the pans are filled to the brim with eggs. The cook skilfully flips the mixture over as the liquid cooks and gently firms. The dish also goes by the name of akashiyaki, and originally came from the fact that they wanted to promote the city. The name has stuck ever since.
When the tamagoyaki is done, it is presented on a wooden plate resembling a cutting board. They look so delicious you want to get straight down to business and dunk the first one in the soup right away. You soak the tamagoyaki in the soup, and it soaks you in yummy, yummy happiness! It feels a bit like when you eat your first xiaolongbao (Chinese soup dumpling).
After a little while, the heavy tamagoyaki flatten under their own weight, but they don’t lose their appealing looks. At Kanehide, you get sauce as well as soup, but it’s also pretty tasty eaten as is, and doing so allows you to appreciate the octopus even more.
Offering fresh seafood straight off the boats at the nearby harbor, the Uonotana shopping district is only a 5 minute walk from Akashi station.
Onwards to the popular Takoiso for more akashiyaki!
Takoiso, another popular Akashi shop, is also in the same area. At Takoiso, they don’t use octopus, but rather local eel for their anagoyaki (eel dumplings).
It’s not long before regulars order second servings as they gulp down the delicious soup made with konbu (seaweed) and bonito. With a mitsuba (trefoil) on top, the soup is delicious enough to eat straight.
If you come and visit Uonotana, you must definitely try every kind of tamagoyaki/akashiyaki there is on offer. Even if you get too full too fast, most shops also do doggy bags, so you can take any excess home as souvenirs.
And if you ever feel a bit peckish and fancy some more back home, you can also buy it frozen.
Address: 1-5-20 Honmachi, Akashi City, Hyogo Prefecture
Open: Weekdays 11:00 – 15:00. Weekends 11:00 – 17:00
Parking: Available w/fee (Uonotana parking area)
Address: 1-1-11 Honmachi, Akashi City, Hyogo Prefecture
Open: 10:00 – 19:00
Closed: Open throughout the year
Parking: Available w/fee (Uonotana parking area)
Takoyakitachibana San Plaza (picture only)
Address: B1F San Plaza, 1-8-1 Sannomiya, Chuo Ward, Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture
Open: 11:00 – 19:00
Closed: January 1st
Parking: Available w/fee
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Madoka Hori
Madoka Hori / Photo-writer Entrepreneurial translator/writer living in Hyogo. As a licensed English tour guide, she occasionally takes tourists to beautiful destinations such as Kobe, Himeji, Okayama, Kyoto, and Osaka and her clients have never got lost so far. On Setouchi Finder, as one of the original team members, she enjoys taking photos and sharing her favorite hidden gems. Private Photo Blog http://riderv328.tumblr.com Twitter https://twitter.com/Riderv328
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