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Nagaimo Pancakes
Japan   -   Tororo yaki

4 app  
1-1/4 hr  
Similar to potato pancakes (latkes) but tender and more delicate in flavor. Excellent for brunch, but figure about 2 pancakes per person as these are not low calorie. This recipe makes about 8 pancakes a little over 3 inches across. If you need drier more durable pancakes use 1 ounce and pat thinner like an Indian dosa.


Nagaimo (1)
Dried Shrimp (2)  
Bacon, sliced
Lard (3)
-- Garninsh
  1. Peel NAGAIMO and grate on the fine shredder side of your grater. You will now have a disgusting slimy glob of goop, but do not fear, it will cook fine.
  2. Grind Shrimp to powder in a mortar or your spice grinder. Massage it into the Nagaimo along with Salt (or have a kid do it, they love playing in slime).
  3. Chop Scallions for garnish.
  4. Bring Lard up hot in a large skillet. Put 1-1/2 oz spoonfuls of Nagaimo into the pan and fry over medium high heat until golden brown on the bottom. Meanwhile cut pieces of Sliced Bacon and press them gently onto the top side of the pancakes.
  5. When pancakes are nicely golden brown on the bottom and hold their shape when moved around use a thin turner to flip them over bacon side down. Continue frying until the bacon side is golden brown also.
  6. Turn pancakes out onto paper towels and pat the top with a towel to absorb oil, but don't let them linger on the towel, they'll stick. They can be set on a plate or platter bacon side up in a low oven until needed.
  7. Serve garnished with a sprinkle of chopped Scallions
  1. Nagaimo:   This long beige yam can be found in markets serving an East Asian community. For details see our Nagaimo page.
  2. Dried Shrimp:   These are important in the cuisines of East and Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America and aren't hard to find. For details see our Dried Shrimp page.
  3. Lard:   Yes, lard. My attempt to fry these in olive oil was a total disaster, they stuck fast to the pan and couldn't be pried loose. The pan had to be scraped and washed. I tried lard and they didn't even think about sticking. The American Heart Association so villainized lard Americans are afraid to use it, but it's not nearly as dangerous as the trans fats they told us to use instead. It has a better health profile than butter, and is now increasingly used by top chefs. For details see our Lard page.
  4. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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