Chawanmushi (trial and recipe)

Monday, June 9, 2014

One of the things I actually succeed in making is a nice set of Chawanmushi (茶碗蒸し). I know it feels like you're eating tofu, but it's made of eggs. I say this because I did have a friend who thought that this dish was made of tofu, and I can't blame her, it does resemble tofu a lot in terms of texture. 

The process is really simple-- it's just mixing the right ratio of eggs and liquid, then adding dashi and other condiments to flavor it. The steaming process isn't delicate either; you can open the lid of the steamer to check without risking the sinkage of the chawanmushi custard. And I think it really would be a good excuse to buy a set of matching cute teacups, although for this one I just used all the teacup sized cups at home regardless of whether they match or not. 

So here are the photos of the process:

Here's the mixing bowl with just water in it. 

My Wilton mixing bowl. Tee hee I just love it. And for 4 dollars at Duty Free, ain't bad, eh?

The egg and water before mixing. I did try using milk another time back then, but the result kind of tasted like a salty creme brulee gone Frankenstein. So I decided to stick to water from then on. 

The little details (clockwise from L) : The steamer, the mixture, the dashi and Magic Sarap I used, and the mushrooms soaked in water. 

Good thing there were still some crabsticks left when I did this!

All ready to steam. :> 

These are the custard cups halfway into the steaming. This is the sign to put in the mushroom and crabstick toppings. 

So this is how they look like from putting them on until they're cooked, not many visual changes here. 

I went berserk with the crabsticks because I was tired of getting just one crabstick whenever I dined in Japanese restaurants that I was like 'kthxbye this is my own cooking I can put enough crabstick in here till world peace is achived'.  

The recipe is here as follows (adapted from this website): 


1 sachet of Dashi 
1 small sachet Maggi Magic Sarap
2 cups warm water 
3 large eggs
Crabsticks (sky's the limit)
4 small shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced

1.) In a bowl, prepare water. Whisk in dashi powder and maggi Magic sarap until dissolved. In the same bowl, using chopsticks, stir in the eggs very very gently. Try not to incorporate too much air. 

2.) Place custard mix into teacups or small bowls. Carefully place the bowls in a steamer basket over boiling water and steam for about 7 minutes. 

3.) Once they seem to be firm on top, add in the mushrooms and crabsticks on top of the custards. 

4.) Steam for 7 more minutes until a spoon doesn't sink into the cup and bounces back moderately.

5.) Take off heat and serve. Yipee! 

Note: You can find Dashi in Rustan's supermarkets, in Choto stop in Little Tokyo (near Makati Cinema Square), and possibly the Konbini store, too. 

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