Pancakes: Not Just For Breakfast Anymore

Unless you live in Japan, you may not have experienced a Croque Monsieur made with…pancakes. Yes, here in Tokyo, pancakes are regularly repurposed as sandwich fixings and dessert. At the Pancake Days restaurant in Harajuku, the menu offerings include the Salad Pancake With Herb Chicken and Original Caesar Dressing,  and the Shrimp-Avocado Sandwich Pancake with Wasabi Mayonnaise. If you’re still hungry after polishing off your entree (and the three happy face french fries that come with it), you can indulge in a Vitamin Fruits Pancake Sandwich (fruit and whipped cream layered between two pancakes with a happy face branded on the top) or a Triple Berry Rear Cheese Pancake. “Rear cheese” in this case is not a hind haunch of wild Camembert, but a slight misspelling of “rare cheese.” That usually means cream cheese, but it’s worth reading the fine print so you aren’t unpleasantly surprised by taking a bite of sweet, gouda-flavored whipped cream.

Here’s what it looked like when you cut into it.

Here’s my friend’s Shrimp-Avocado Sandwich with Wasabi Mayo.

If you’d like to visit Harajuku the next time you’re in Tokyo, directions & maps are on my website, The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had. This restaurant is called Pancake Days.

Read a novel set in Tokyo

In the wake of a deadly earthquake, fans erupt in a frenzy of mourning when it’s discovered that their favorite pop star is among the dead. But when Detective Kenji Nakamura is sent to investigate a death at a local shrine, he finds evidence that suggests the impossible: How could the head priest have been murdered by…read more