When I was a pre-teen and needed to make a quick dinner for my family since my parents were working, I would whip up this silky Cantonese steamed egg dish in a few minutes. I had not made this comfort food dish for decades for my family until recently when my daughter was home. Her immediate reaction was, "this egg is dank !" For those not familiar with millennial slang, it means "excellent"! (I had to look that up!) I knew loved it because she wanted me to give her a detailed recipe and asked me to make it almost every night. I also made it for my other daughter and she loved it too so it's definitely a recipe worth sharing.
I love sharing recipes, but I also want the recipes to be universal so that it can be successrully made no matter the country, the egg size and the unit of measurement.
Tips for making Silky Cantonese Steamed Egg
For this recipe, I have experimented so that the size and quantity of the eggs do not matter as long as the ratios are correct. Water and its temperature is the key to creating the creamy consistency, both in the mixture and out of the mixture. The egg is diluted with very warm water to thin out the egg mixture and the eggs are also steamed so the temperature is warm enough to barely cook and not toughen the eggs.
When breaking and mixing the egg with water, do not whisk the egg. This creates bubbles in the egg which affects the texture of the steamed egg, making it not smooth and silky. Either use a whisk or two forks to stir and break the eggs.
The fail-proof way to make this silky Cantonese steamed egg recipe is to use the correct amount of water. After much trial and error, the best way to make this recipe is to measure the egg by volume. This allows flexibility in the recipe. The egg to water ratio is 1 to .75 or 1 to 1, depending on how you like your eggs. Two large eggs usually yields about half a cup of egg mixture. Add enough water to get to three quarters of a cup and maybe one cup if you like the egg somewhat jiggly. I prefer the texture of the egg to be more like silken tofu so I usually opt for a 1 to .75 egg to water ratio.
The water temperature that dilutes the eggs also affects the ease of dispersion and blending. The water should be very warm to the touch but not too hot that it cooks the egg. A fail-proof way of getting the correct temperature is to combine a 1 to 1 ratio of boiling water and iced water.
This is a simple homestyle Cantonese steamed egg dish and the only seasonings used are salt, a dash of pepper, sherry or similar alcohol (mirin) that is optional that goes into the egg mixture before its cooked. It is then seasoned with soy-sauce, sugar, sesame oil, more sherry and chopped scallions or chives as a topping.
Steaming the eggs
I've tried microwaving this recipe and the eggs, although cooked and smooth, tend to be slightly rubbery. The best is to steam the eggs, because it doesn't take that much longer than microwaving and the end product is so much better! When steaming the eggs, place a plastic wrap over the egg mixture to prevent the steam from dripping back into the eggs which creates "holes" on the surface of the egg.
Adding the seasoning
Combine the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl before pouring it onto the steamed egg. Cut the egg into squares or diamonds so that the sauce can infuse throughout the steamed egg. Sprinkle with chopped scallion or chives and add the sauce. Enjoy!
SILKY CANTONESE STEAMED EGG
- bamboo steamer Other steamed can work
- measuring cups
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup boiling water
- ¼ cup iced water
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- dash white pepper
- 1 tsp cooking oil.
- Water for steaming
- Combine boiling water and iced water into a measuring cup or small container. You will not be using all this water!¼ cup boiling water, ¼ cup iced water
- Break eggs into (another) measuring cup.2 large eggs
- Add enough warm water to make a 1 : ¾ egg to water ratio.
- Using the 2 forks, carefully break down the egg and combine the egg and water together without creating any bubbles.
- Add the salt, pepper and oil.¼ tsp sea salt, dash white pepper, 1 tsp cooking oil.
- Stir and combine ingredients.
- Pour egg mixture into a flat based bowl.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap
- Heat water for steaming.Water for steaming
- Place bowl in steamer and steam for 10-12 minutes.
Sauce and garnish
- Chop scallions / chives.1-2 stalks finely sliced scallions / chives.
- Combine ingredients for sauce in a small bowl.2 tsp light soy sauce, 1 Tbsp sesame oil, ¼ tsp sugar, ½ tsp sherry
- After egg is steamed, CAREFULLY remove the plastic wrap. The steam that initially escapes is HOT!
- Cut the eggs into cubes or diamond patterns.
- Garnish with scallions / chives and pour over sauce.
- Enjoy with rice.