For cheap, very tasty and very unusual Japanese food, try okonomiyaki (pronounced "economy-ah-key") at Otafuku's. This minuscule restaurant on "Japanese Street," (east 9th) in the East Village serves up some of the most satisfying, finger-lickin' good dishes that you've probably never heard of. Their signature dishes are okonomiaki (egg, cabbage, spices and shrimp pancakes topped with mayonnaise, dried seaweed powder and bonito flakes) and takoyaki (fritter balls made of octopus, scallions and ginger).
There is no sitting room - food is served up only for take-out, but their hours are late so this makes Otafuku's a good post-party nosh, (if you happen to end up in the East Village). Otafuku is located at 236 East 9th Street, between 2nd and 3rd Aves. It's small, so you might just miss it.