“Chikuwa” stuffed with cucumber and cheese 竹輪のチーズとキュウリの射込み

japanese cake
When I made fried chikuwa sticks, I had two chikuwa leftover since one package contained 4 chikuwa. The next day, I decided to make this quick dish which is again a classic lowly Izakaya or homey dish which does not really involve “cooking”. Since chikuwa has a convenient hollow center, it is perfect to stuff the space with something, which is called “ikomi” 射込み in Japanese culinary parlance. Actually some fish cakes are made with the center already filled such as “goboten” ごぼう天 (the center contains a burdock root).

Here, I made sticks of Raclette cheese and cucumber and filled the center holes of each chikuwa. Chikuwa is elastic so you do not have to carve the cheese and cucumber precisely. I just make sure the entire length of chikuwa is stuffed. I cut it in half first. I then cut the half obliquely into two pieces. You may have to shave the flat bottom to make it stand up like you see in the picture above for a better presentation.

I added the last of wasabi-zuke わさび漬け with soy sauce. You could serve this with wasabi paste and soy sauce as well. This is nothing special but serves well as a small snack which goes well with whatever you happened to be drinking.

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