Sushi Tamago

Posted on Sep 21, 2017 in Hiroko's Blog

High-end sushi restaurant serve a type of egg-sponge cake like dish at the conclusion of the meal – kind of a “pre-dessert”. Acclaimed sushi chef, Kimura, served me one of the best sushi tamago on my visit to the restaurant several years ago. Check out: Sublime – Fish That Tastes Better with Age (he served me 90 days cured fish!) http://zesterdaily.com/world/cuisine/sublime-sushi-fish-that-tastes-better-with-age/

This is an excerpt from my sushi book, The Sushi Experience:

“When I talked with Hiroaki Sasaki, an owner chef at the venerable sushi restaurant Sasaki in Tokyo, he told me, ‘tamago-yaki’ was adopted into sushi restaurants from the sobaya, a buckwheat noodle restaurant. Soba restaurants traditionally made their own noodles from scratch several times a day on the premises. So the customers sometimes had to wait a while until the soba dough was kneaded, rolled out, cut into strips, cooked, and finally served. But they were willing to wait because no soba tasted better than when the noodles have been just made and immediately cooked. In order to keep these hungry waiting customers happy, the sobaya developed a tradition of serving collections of simple appetizers and a flask of sake, rice wine. And the dashimaki tamago has long been one of the most popular such appetizers. It was a natural move for the chef, since the soba kitchen was always stocked with copious quantities of daily-made high quality dashi and eggs, both of which are prime ingredients.”

Do you remember one episode in the famous film “Jiro Dreams of Sushi”? Apprentice Chef Daisuke Nakazawa (now at the very high-end Nakazawa Sushi in New York) is making egg sponge cake-like tamago https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFP5xD2l3ro? He tells how after making 200 tamago, Master Chef Jiro told him that he had have finally succeeded to make an excellent egg sponge cake-like tamago. Jiro congratulated Daisuke calling him ‘shokunin’, master.

Here is another excerpt from The Sushi Experience:

“Egg-sponge cake like tamagoyaki was a natural development in the sushi kitchen, where there was always leftover fish and shrimp. Pureed, these seafood scraps were mixed with eggs and made into an egg cake. You feel as if you are eating a moist and slightly dense pound cake.”

I made egg sponge cake-like sushi tamago many times while testing recipes for The Sushi Experience. “Many”, in my case means only 12 times. I used the oven to cook it. Well, life is too short for everyone to challenge this special tamago 200 times. hirokoshimbo

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