Mitchan Sōhonten – Hiroshima Style Okonomiyaki in Hiroshima!

ByJade Brischke
Jun 20, 2021

Mitchan Sōhonten – Hiroshima Style Okonomiyaki in Hiroshima!

Okonomiyaki would be like a Japanese pancake if pancakes were made of vegetables and meat, not sweet but incredibly savory.  In fact, there is very little to compare the two dishes besides the general shape and the fact that both are truly awesome dishes. Perhaps Japanese Pizza would be more appropriate, except there is no bread….  hmm… Perhaps it is time to treat Okonomiyaki as its own separate category. After all, we don’t compare pancakes to pizza either!

The name “okonomiyaki” is a combination of the word “okonomi,” meaning “as you like,” and “yaki” which means something grilled or pan-fried.  The dish originates from the Kansai / Osaka area, but its popularity has grown throughout Japan, and at this point, you can basically get it anywhere with many regional spins on the dish. This means that you can get okonomiyaki anywhere in Japan in a dizzying array of highly localized and regional varieties.

In its most basic form, the original Kansai dish is prepared with batter made of flour, grated yam, water, eggs, shredded cabbage, and often varied with green onion, meat, seafood, vegetables, mochi, and even cheese.  I once ate “American-yaki” which contained tons of pork and cheese, as well as corn.  It sounds odd, but it was pretty good.

Kansai Style Okonomiyaki Recipes


One excellent regional variation comes from Hiroshima. Hiroshima-yaki features much more cabbage than in Kansai, and noodles and other ingredients are layered rather than mixed.  Calling this a delicacy would be inappropriate.  All okonomiyaki is more like “down home-cookin’,” or “soul food,” and, as such, it lives up to the “as you like” portion of its name.

Ordering in Hiroshima requires choosing between a wide array of toppings and noodles (soba, udon…).  The most basic version of Hiroshimayaki is soba niku-tama, which consists of cabbage topped with pork, egg, and noodles. But it would be best if you also gave due consideration to seafood, especially Hiroshima’s famous oysters (kaki-iri).

Mitchan Sōhonten

If you are in the area and fancy the real deal, the home of Hiroshima-yaki is Mitchan Sōhonten, generally referred to as “Mitchan.”   If you make the trip, we suggest ordering “the deluxe!”

Mitchan Sōhonten 新天地みっちゃん

730-0034 Hiroshima, Naka Ward, Shintenchi, 6−12 (Map link)

Taisyo, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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