The other day, Mabie and I felt like having a little afternoon snack. Our eyes spotted a Marumaru stall at the top floor of Robinsons Pioneer, and being the takoyaki fan Mabie is, we decided to try it out.
|"Maru" is Japanese for "round" - so this means "round round"|
|Marumaru's "takoyaki" banner|
For the uninitiated, takoyaki are Japanese octopus balls. Unlike fishballs or squidballs, which are mostly made of processed meat, takoyaki meat is enveloped in dough, drizzled with Japanese mayo and a brown savory/umami-tasting sauce, and drizzled with shaved bonito flakes (also used on another dish called okonomiyaki) and what looks like finely chopped parsley. Cooking takoyaki is also different; they are steamed instead of fried, and their doughy exterior retains the cooked-in heat much longer than your usual fishball.
Marumaru's takoyaki is a pretty good afternoon snack if you're hungry. The dough is finely textured and their sauces are very flavorful, although like most takoyaki places I've tried it's not a particularly meaty treat. The octopus meat flavor instead permeates the dough, so the taste is subtler and not in-your-face.
|You make tusok-tusok the takoyaki to eat it|
|Be careful with handling your uneaten takoyaki :)|
One of the unfortunate things about this particular stall is that even the lady preparing our order was not able to sufficiently explain what takoyaki was to a prospective customer lined up behind us. He was asking her if these were squidballs, but all she could answer was "this is takoyaki" - and subsequently lost his interest. It was a minor shame, considering that Marumaru makes pretty good takoyaki.
|They serve gyoza, too|
I heard from Mabie that Marumaru has its stalls within a number of malls by now - she's seen them in Glorietta.