Have you noticed how often takoyaki appears in Toei shows?
Takoyaki uses the word for octopus (tako) and the word for grill (yaki). But because the piece of octopus sits in batter while it’s grilled, it’s sometimes called “octopus balls” or “octopus batter balls”. You can make it at home as long as you have a takoyaki-ki or takoyaki maker (which you can purchase on Amazon by the way).
The snack is really easy to make, and the ingredients are really easy to find. All you really needs is flour, eggs, dashi, and whatever you want to add into the center of the batter ball. It doesn’t have to just be octopus (although I guess it wouldn’t be called takoyaki anymore). It is very common to top takoyaki with takoyaki sauce, bonito flakes, and green onions.
Since we are not a cooking channel, I will defer the how-to to one of my favorite Japanese Cooking sites: Just One Cookbook.
I believe that that is the reason why Toei likes to feature them as the select snack in their shows because they are really easy to make and the ingredients are really cheap. You can probably make a few dozen with maybe 2,000 yen worth of ingredients (this number could vary depending on where you live).
One thing I have noticed with the takoyaki in Toei’s shows though… They are very low effort. As pictured above, the ones that are in Kaito’s hands really only has sauce and bonito flakes on them. Some would say that that’s enough. But if anyone’s ever been to a street vendor or to a friend’s house who can make the snack, you’ll know that you can also add benishouga (pickled red ginger), aonori (dried green seaweed), agedama (tempura scraps), and Japanese mayonnaise (particularly the Kewpie brand).
Once again, Happy April Fools’. Go get some takoyaki.