Oban Yaki: Japanese Style Pancake @ Isetan CTW

I love Japanese food. I can eat it everyday and still not get bored with it.  Tonight I feel like having some Japanese Oban Yaki (which are Japanese pancakes with some fillings) so to curve my craving,  I will tell you instead about it.  It’s incredibly delicious and satisfying.  It’s comfort food that beats all the other comfort foods. (For me anyways)

I’ve never had this pancake anywhere else other than at the Isetan Store at Central World in Bangkok so I cannot tell you if it’s the best one, but even then I find it scrumptious.  I can feel my eyes sparkle and already my mouth curving into a grin just thinking about this pancake hot off the stove with gooey fillings.  I like the one with the hot chocolate filling, but the creamy custard or the red bean are also just as good.   The chocolate is hot and gooey to the right consistency, not too sweet nor too bitter.  I can imagine myself biting into the warm hot chocolate, whose taste is just perfectly offset by the pancake.  It also doesn’t run down your hands so it’s perfect.  The cream is just lovely and not too sweet.  A great cream pancake if you love cream buns.  The red bean is a thicker consistency and full of nutrients.  (I’m not a very keen red bean person)

The counter is just outside the Isetan supermarket on the fifth floor and behind a glass wall you can observe the pancakes being made.  A special stove with large indentations form the shape of the pancake.  The batter is first put in, rotated and the filling finally dropped in just as the pancake is partially cook.  Towards the end, the second half is placed on top and a few minutes later you have the Oban Yaki.

I love watching it being made.  Almost every time I go there, I find a little crowd of people watching as they wait for the Oban Yakis to be ready.  It’s that popular, on weekends they aren’t made fast enough for the hungry consumer.  I always buy at least three and for a mere 30thb each, they aren’t a bad deal…

They are so good that when I went to Japan last year, I actually went around looking for the “original” from Japan, made in Japan Oban Yaki, but helas I could not find it.  Perhaps its only found in certain cities.  I suppose this gives me an excuse to go back to Japan and look for it some day.  I still love the country.

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