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Taiyaki: the sweetest fish you’ll ever eat

If you keep up to date with foodie news, you’ll definitely have seen these fish-shaped treats getting a lot of love online recently. But taiyaki are by no means a new foodie trend, in fact their history spans over 100 years.

taiyaki london

Mini taiyaki at Bake

Taiyaki literally translates to fried seabream – tai (seabream) are seen as the most royal of fish in Japanese culture, and as such, seabream-shaped sweets and decorations tend to be the hallmarks of momentous celebrations in Japan, such as weddings. Taiyaki came about as a type of street food in Tokyo in 1909; a fish shape made of crispy pancake batter filled with azuki paste (sweetened red beans). Whilst it saw relative popularity, the snack really took off in 1975 when the song “Swim! Taiyaki” (Oyoge! Taiyaki-kun) held the no. 1 spot in Japanese charts for 11 weeks straight.

Along with the craze for taiyaki came the variations: custard taiyaki, chocolate taiyaki, sweet potato taiyaki, sausage taiyaki, cheese taiyaki, frozen white taiyaki, croissant taiyaki… The list goes on and on. And now, a new star emerges: taiyaki topped with soft serve ice cream.

Tayaki Fish

Matcha and vanilla soft-serve Taiyaki

The cone is made in almost the same way to a stuffed taiyaki; with waffle batter poured over a fish-shaped mould, but in this case the batter has so be kept thin so as to create a cone rather than a cake. The two sides of the cone are then fused together, and the cone is taken off the press. Next, this fishy friend is topped with the soft serve of your choice – our favourite is the mix of matcha (green tea) & vanilla at Bake on Wardour St!

So there you have it: the little fish that could, staying relevant all the way from 1909 to now!

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