I grew up not too far from Downtown Los Angeles and Little Tokyo, so we spent a good amount of time in the area. Remembering the places my dad would take us for treats and the restaurants we'd go to, most are no longer around.
Here's one of the memories, my sister and I were really young, we used to go with our mom to pick-up my dad when he had his office on 1st Street. Sometimes we would wait for him by watching them make imagawayaki in the window at Mitsuru Cafe, before they moved to the Japanese Village Plaza. Did I just show my age?
If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I sometimes stop
to pick up my favorite treat when I'm in Little Tokyo.
Imagawayaki is like two pancakes with sweet Azuki beans in the center.
They're about the size of a hockey puck, but not as thick.
After all of these years, it still tastes the same as I remember.
This is the same griddle that I used to watch
them make as a kid and continues to use today.
First the pancake type batter is placed in the griddle.
Once the batter starts to bubble, the Azuki beans are added.
The batter for the second side is started.
Once the second side starts to bubble, the side
with the beans are added on top.
When completed, they're placed in the warmer near the window.
I didn't try any in Japan, because to me, these are the Original.
See What Jay Eats...
For me, it's more of a childhood memory
and treat when I visit Little Tokyo.
Usually on the weekends, just look for the line in front of the window.
I used to have a client Downtown and we would
meet on Mondays. I would walk through Little Tokyo
to catch the Gold Line for the trip home,
but Mitsuru Cafe is closed on Mondays...
117 Japanese Village Plaza Mall
(between 1st and 2nd Street)
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Closed on Mondays
BTW, Mitsuru Cafe has a Japanese cafe menu,
with noodles, rice bowls, and specials.
2014 is the 130th Anniversary of Little Tokyo
More to come...Stay Tuned
OR some places have them prepackaged.
@KristieHang tells me, they're also made at
the San Gabriel Superstore on
San Gabriel Blvd and Valley Blvd.
Photos by Jay Terauchi