Monday, July 16, 2012

Japanese Mexican Fusion–Alpha Version of the Yakisoburrito!

A second day of posting in a row? Crazy? Maybe so, but I’m just trying to make up for lost time.

But on a more exciting note, today’s post is another Cast Iron Therapy Original! Well, an alpha version of one anyway, there are definite improvements that can be made.

Now, prepare yourself for some stream of consciousness style meandering narrative, or just skip to after the picture if that’s not your thing.

I wanted to make something regional initially, and a few ideas bounced around in my head as to what regional things were good in the area. Were I a lot further south in California, I could do a California Burrito, so there was that bouncing in my head.

At the same time, I wanted to try using some things from the farmer’s market as well, as that is pretty regional.

Going back to the idea of California however, there’s California Cuisine, which is “marked by an interest in fusion cuisine.” So, how about a fusion dish that uses local goods, and is partly inspired by the California Burrito. And… oh let’s fuse it with yakisoba while we’re at it.

In the end, this is regional from a very broad interpretation. It’s from the region of my brain.


I truly hope that I am not doing something horrific that the Japan and Mexico will hate me for doing in working on this recipe.

Ok, thanks for bearing with me in that really long introduction! Now for the recipe.

Here’s my loot from that morning’s farmer’s market trip, a red onion, what I believe are Hungarian wax peppers, golden zucchini and an ear of corn.

To prep these, cook the corn in your preferred style. When I’m in a hurry, I just like to soak the ear of corn in water, then microwave for 3-4 minutes until cooked. Once the ear of corn has cooled off, cut the corn kernels off. I have a feeling that grilled corn would be pretty awesome, but a bit of work when you just need one ear.

Dice everything else, and discard innards of the peppers. I like to use this method.


With these, I opted to make something that could be described as a sautéed corn dish that is not quite succotash but definitely not salsa, with the idea that something dryer might be better with the yakisoba. I’ll give you the verdict on that later. I’ll call it “sortatash” because it doesn’t have lima beans like a real succotash.

First in a heavy skillet, olive oil is heated over high heat, then the diced zucchini is tossed to cook for a few minutes.


Once the zucchini begins to emit some of its aroma, throw in diced wax peppers.


Add a few healthy shakes of chili powder, then add


Then add the corn kernels, cook briefly and remove from heat. I added the diced red onion after cooking so that it wouldn’t get cooked and keep some of its raw flavor, but if you aren’t into that you could probably add it with everything else while it’s cooking.

Now for the yakisoba. I’ll just refer you to this recipe. Remember to adjust the seasoning upwards if you aren’t feeling a lot of kick from it, because when you put things in bread or tortillas, they need a bolder flavor.

There’s a slight difference from the original recipe since I used beef, as I had some that I really needed to use.


It might have been a bit too good quality and I may have been extravagant in using it, but I’m not going to complain.


I used the same bit skillet that I made the “sortatash” in to make the yakisoba. After cooking the meat (sorry forgot the picture) didn’t bother cleaning out the good stuff, because I wanted to use the fond to flavor the yakisoba.


Here’s the yakisoba before I added the meat back to it and fully seasoned it.


California burritos need fries too. I’m not going to bother to try to explain the Serious Eats method to making McDonald’s style fries, as they explain it a lot better. But I will say you should use it.


Because it works very well.




Now for the assembly. Onto a tortilla (preferably a really great fresh one, and not what I had) put down a layer of yakisoba.


Cover the yakisoba with sortatash.


Then add some fries.


Then fold (more neatly than this if you can) and eat!


Repeat until full, perhaps using Valencia hot sauce or what have you.


So, I have to say this is not quite perfected yet. I think I overestimated how moist the yakisoba was from my memory. Looking back at it, I think some salsa Fresca would have complimented the fried noodles really well.

I also would have upped the spice ratio in the sortatash a lot more. I didn’t realize wax peppers were so mild when I picked them up. A thinly diced habanero would have really punched it up a bit.


Yakisoba recipe

Sortatash recipe-

  • 3 wax peppers, diced
  • the kernels from 1-2 ears of corn,
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 small summer squash (Italian, golden zucchini, patty pan), diced
  • Chili powder to taste
  • Vegetable oil for sautéing
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a skillet, pour vegetable oil to coat, then put over medium high heat.
  2. (Optional) Add red onion if you prefer your onions cooked.
  3. Add diced squash and cook for a minute or two.
  4. Add diced wax peppers and continue cooking until the squash is cooked
  5. Season with several shakes of chili powder.
  6. Add corn kernels and heat through, then remove skillet from heat.
  7. Add red onion if you didn’t cook it and stir to combine.
  8. Adjust seasoning to taste with salt, pepper, and chili powder.


  1. Looks wonderful! So much squash coming in, great and different use. Thanks!

    1. And thank you for visiting! Glad to help you make some more use of all that squash!

  2. Thank you so much for this! Great great idea
    Just made this and it is SPECTACULAR.
    Even threw in some homemade Guac and it worked like a dream

    1. Fantastic! I'm glad you liked it Shohei! Mind if I ask how you came across the post? Always curious how people find this.