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Imitation octopus balls are Japan’s newest pseudo-gourmet recipe for boiled eggs

By Casey Baseel, SoraNews24

Takoyaki are one of Japan’s best snack foods. The savory spherical seafood dumplings are inexpensive, tasty, and filling, which is pretty much the holy triumvirate of good munchie criteria.

There is, however, one potential drawback to takoyaki. The tako part means “octopus,” and while the oceanic octopod is commonly eaten in Japan, it might not be something you’re accustomed to, or even able to easily find at the supermarket, depending on what part of the world you’re living in.

But we recently came across a way to get most of the takoyaki flavor without any tako, thanks to a recipe for takoyaki-style eggs.

The recipe comes from the Japan Agricultural Cooperatives Group’s National Federation of Agricultural Cooperative Associations, which, thankfully, abbreviates down to Zen-Noh due to how those terms are rendered in Japanese. The recipe is incredibly simple, and has only a handful of necessary ingredients:

● Eggs

● Takoyaki sauce

● Mayonnaise

Aonori (powdered seaweed)

Katsuobushi (bonito flakes)

And as short as the ingredient list is, the number of cooking steps is even smaller.

Step 1: Boil the eggs.


Step 2: Pour on the takoyaki sauce and mayo.

Step 3: Sprinkle on the aonori and katsuobushi.

That’s all there is to it. Zen-Noh recommends whipping up some takoyaki-style eggs when you’re feeling like you could use just one more side dish for a fully satisfying dinner, and if you happen to be in the habit of keeping a batch of hard-boiled eggs in your fridge, the rest of the prep work only takes a few seconds.


Taste-testing duties/privileges fell to our Japanese-language reporter Ahiru Neko, and he says if you’ve ever eaten takoyaki, the takoyaki-style eggs will taste exactly like you’d imagine they would: a mix of sweet and savory flavors, with a dash of tartness from the mayo and a bit of mature bitterness from the aonori.


As a matter of fact, it’s so tasty that he decided to turn a second takoyaki-style egg into a sharable version by slicing it first and then adding the sauce and other seasonings.



The result looks like something you’d order at an izakaya pub to share with friends while knocking back a few cold ones. It’s also just fancy enough to fool people at a potluck or barbeque that you spent a suitable amount of time and effort on it, despite being something that actually takes less than a minute to make as long as you’ve already got boiled eggs.

▼ Ideally, you want there to be at least a little yolk in every slice, since the milder white section’s flavor alone can sometimes get lost under the sauce.


▼ Zen-Noh’s tweet about the takoyaki-style eggs, in which they declare “A new wave of hard-boiled eggs has arrived.”


Reference: Twitter/@zennoh_food

Photos © SoraNews24

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© SoraNews24

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Edamame for chickpeas, cheese for tofu and now, boiled eggs as “imitation”

6 ( +6 / -0 )


2 ( +4 / -2 )

Pseudo-gourmet? Ha! Too much sauce always used be to cover the smell of a bad dish. See what ya did there, Farmboy. On that topic, have you tried the smokey mountain oysters as substitute? Nothing imitation about those. And a bit of Greek with the word for octopus yesterday got deleted for reasons unknown.

Oh, well, no harm. Cheers, mates!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Sorry Farmboy, NO “take-backsies”. To turn a phrase, you can put the eggs back in the chicken.

FarmboyJune 4  11:46 pm JST

I'm glad they found a substitution for the real octopus balls. Octopi shouldn't be doomed to speak in high voices.

5( +1 / -5 )

Even the reporters here have to live with periodic bad ideas. Better luck next time, friend.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

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