Takoyaki, or octopus dumplings, are quite the foodie favorite in Japan. The tasty fritters are filled with diced octopus, pickled ginger, green onion, and tempura bits, and then usually slathered in a tangy takoyaki sauce, mayonnaise, and sprinkled with dried bonito shavings (that seem to dance when the takoyaki is served hot) and green laver.
While a popular food stall snack at festivals, it's also quite fun to make at home parties with the help of a takoyaki grill. Takoyaki grills are cast-iron griddles with small spherical molds that can quickly cook up a dumpling after you pour in the ingredients and continue to rotate them.
Metako (@metakobot) found a different use for a takoyaki griddle that's been making mouths water on Twitter, it seems.
Whether you're stuck with a grill and no takoyaki ingredients because you simply ran out or aren't a fan of saucy octopus dumplings, Metako has a "genius" solution they whipped up on a whim--quick and delicious grilled burger bites.
Whether covered with a fancy demi-glace or topped with melted cheese, hamburger steak (hambagu) is a popular dish in Japan at home, diners, and especially in children's bento boxes. Metako noticed that the size of the molds in a takoyaki grill were perfect for packing the hamburger steak meat into, and making bite-sized hamburger balls. The size also made it easier to quickly and evenly cook through each ball, as opposed to preparing a whole hamburger steak in a frying pan. If you'll notice, Metako also stuffed each one with cheese for a gooey and tasty filling!
While it's hard to say no to one of western Japan's favorite comfort foods, if you get your hands on a takoyaki grill, don't forget the delicious meaty treats you can make as well.
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