Dorayaki (called Mikasa 三笠 in Osaka and Nara area) is a type of Japanese dessert which consists of two pancakes made from grilled castella, used to sandwich sweet azuki/red bean paste filling. The original dorayaki consisted of only one folded layer. Its current two layer sandwich style was invented in 1914 by Usagiya shop in Ueno, Tokyo.
In Japanese, dora means ‘gong’, and because of the similarity of the shapes, this is probably the origin of the name of the sweet. Legend has it that the first dorayaki were made when a samurai named Benkei forgot his gong (dora) upon leaving a farmer’s home where he was hiding and the farmer subsequently used the gong to grill (yaki) the pancakes, thus the name dorayaki. More-so, people relate dorayaki to a very famous Japanese manga/animation character, Doraemon, who is addicted to dorayaki and falls for any trap involving it.
Dorayaki • どら焼き
Recipe by: Fae’s Twist & Tango (fae-magazine.com)
This is a very standard recipe, super easy and very delicious dessert to make. Some add mirin to the recipe, but I do not see the necessity. Traditionally, sweetened azuki in smooth paste or coarsely mashed is used as filling. However, I prefer the filling to be the mixture of half-and-half of sweetened azuki paste and whipped cream. Mixed with whipped cream, azuki adds a dark pink hue.
• 2 large eggs at room temperature
• 100 g / ½ cup granulated sugar
• 1 Tbsp honey, if too thick, warmed slightly to make easier to mix
• ½ tsp baking soda
• 50 ml/ 3½ Tbsp water to dissolve baking soda + more to adjust the thickness of the batter
• 128 g/ 1 cup all purpose unbleached flour
• vegetable oil
• 250 ~ 300 g sweetened azuki / red-bean paste 
◊ Beat the eggs with sugar until creamy. Add honey and baking soda dissolved in water and mix well. Sprinkle flour while whisking until the mixture is well incorporated. Cover and let the batter rest for 30 minutes.
◊ Check the batter. It has to be flowing, but not watery. If too thick, adjust by adding 1 tsp of water at a time (up to 3 ~4 tsp) and mix until the right consistency.
◊ Heat a large, non-stick, flat (no curvature) fry-pan over a tad higher than medium-low heat. Once well heated (very important), add a few drops of vegetable oil and using fork or chopsticks guiding a piece of folded paper-towel, spread the oil on the surface, and then wipe it completely with another piece of paper-towel to leave no oil streak (this is the key point to assure evenly flawless brown pancake surface). Repeat this every time before a new batch is poured.
◊ Pour about 2½ ~ 3 Tbsp of batter (same amount for all pancakes) in a stream at the center of where batter will spread to make perfect circle (spreads to about 9cm/3½” diameter). When the edges start drying and bubbles form, filling the disk (about 2+ minutes), flip the disk. (The first pancake will give a good indication of how much time it takes with the particular stove being used.) Let the other side grill for about 20 ~ 30 seconds. Transfer them onto a cooling rack. Have a slightly damp kitchen cloth or paper-towel ready to cover the pancakes, to keep them from drying until all the pancakes are grilled.
◊ Place a heaping of red-bean paste in the center of back side of the pancake and cover with another pancake. Gently press the sandwiched pancakes, cupping palm of hands and also gently press the edges together with fingers. Serve immediately or wrap the sandwiches individually in a plastic wrap until ready to serve (refrigerate if cream is used). They freeze very well. Thaw them to room-temperature before serving.
Note: In these modern days, there are stands and shops that sell dorayaki filled with varieties of fillings of choice, i.e. sweetened chestnut paste, red-bean-paste-whipped-cream mix, just whipped cream, whipped cream with fruits, nutella with bananas, varieties of jams, and whatever hearts desire!
~ どうぞめしあがれ • Douzo Meshiagare ~
So, what’s cooking in your kitchen?
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