Taiyaki are Japanese pancakes shaped like fish. They are a common snack or street vendor item. A while back I bought a taiyaki maker at my local Japanese market. Recently, I found out that they now sell it on amazon too. You can view it here.
Taiyaki are usually filled with red bean, custard or chocolate. The exterior is batter similar to that of pancake, though a little denser and chewier.
The taiyaki maker is easy to use and I use it whenever I’m in the mood for something cute. You put the mold pan on your stove to cook the taiyaki and flip it over every minute so that it cooks evenly on both sides. I’m still searching for the best taiyaki recipe out there. I tried one this weekend that looked promising but tasted all wrong, so I won’t link to it. You can use pancake batter, but the taiyaki I’ve had don’t taste exactly like pancake batter.
To make them, heat the taiyaki maker on your stove and spray with oil. Spoon in batter of the fish molds so it is 2/3 full. Drop a dollop of nutella in the middle. Then close the taiyaki maker. Let it cook for about a minute before flipping the taiyaki maker over so that it can cook the other side and brown evenly. Flip again in another minute. At this point you can take a peek to see if it is done or needs to be cooked some more.