[Osaka] There are many famous and popular Takoyaki shops at found at Dotonbori, from Kukuru くくる, Wanaka たこ焼道楽 わなか, Otako 大たこ, Hanadako はなだこ, to Kogaryu 甲賀流.

What makes Takoyaki Juhachiban たこ焼十八番 worth trying is how they combine materials and technology to create a soulful takoyaki.

Takoyaki たこ焼きthe ball-shaped Japanese street food is considered one of Osaka’s “must-eats”, made of a wheat flour-based batter and cooked in a special molded pan.

The flour dough is typically filled diced octopus (or prawns, bacon and other ingredients), tempura scraps, pickled ginger, and green onion; and watching the street food vendors do their craft can be a great joy.

Each takoyaki ball starts with the best ingredients, blending the dough with milk and sprinkling it with octopus, red ginger and shrimp.

The batter is poured to a copper plate mould that allows good thermal conductivity for even, controlled grilling.

Ten minutes is all it takes to transform the batter, one by one, into a crisp exterior ball that encases a creamy texture inside with chewy bits of octopus.

“One ball, one soul” (Ikkou ikkon)

Order 8 pieces for ¥650 (SGD8.20), or get 12 pieces for ¥1000 (SGD12.70) via the vending machine. Prices have gotten higher since the ‘good old days’ though.

Enjoy them with an okonomiyaki sauce, or mayonnaise with aonori (green dried seaweed) and katsuobushi (dried bonito flakes). It is possible to order all 3 types at ¥1000 for 12 pieces as well.

If you are used to Takoyaki with a crispy outer layer, Juhachiban’s version is slightly chewy and softer, but what makes it pleasurable are the tenkatsu or crunchy tempura batter bits which make every bite a delightful mouthfeel.

Also, sakura shrimp powder and red pickled ginger

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