japanese egg castella


I don’t love every recipe I make. But, I don’t cook with the expectation of loving everything I make; I cook because it is fun and I love to try new things. Morimoto is one of those cookbooks where you can open it to almost any page and find something that you couldn’t have imagined on your own. Squid ink-salmon gnocchi, snapper chips, seafood roasted in a hollowed orange, these are just a tiny sampling of the recipes. The things he makes are innovative and brilliant, although fairly intimidating even for a seasoned cook.

I wanted to include this recipe because it was so different from anything I had ever done. A sweet omelet isn’t even a concept that entered my mind until I started eating at sushi restaurants, where it is quite common. This version is a little different from a normal sweet omelet and is only available in the best sushi restaurants – like his (or at least that is what morimoto says and I am prone to believing him). The big difference is the addition of pureed shrimp and the use of a sake infused syrup. And while a Japanese sweet omelet requires the use of a special square frying pan, this recipe can be made in a 13×9 inch baking pan.

This recipe turned out great but it really didn’t suit my tastes. The mix of sweet eggs and shrimp was just something my tastebuds were a little confused by. Knowing that the omelet would be a little plain on its own I searched the whole of Morimoto’s book for a suitable set of sides. I decided some dipping sauces would be nice and some kind of starch component. First I found crab stuffed naan which I thought was a little strange to have in a Japanese cookbook, but that is Morimoto for you. Then I found some dipping sauces that were originally paired with some rock shrimp tempura. There was a wasabi aioli, a spicy mayo, and ranch dressing and they ended up steeling the show.  The dips were fantastic and we plan to make them at every opportunity. They work great for dipping just about anything – veggies to chips to bread to egg omelets. This is why I make interesting and fun recipes; to stumble upon amazingly good recipes like this.

Japanese Egg Castella – Recipe

Serves 8 – Based on the recipe from Morimoto
You might be able to halve this recipe by making it in a couple of loaf pans or a small square pan.

1/4 c sake
3/4 c sugar
1/2 lb (225g) shrimp, shelled and deveined
16 egg yolks
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp heavy cream
2 tbsp flour
12 egg whites

  1.  Pre-heat your oven to 350F and adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray.
  2. Bring the sake and sugar to a boil and swirl until the sugar dissolves. Take off the heat.
  3. In a food processor (or blender) process puree the shrimp until very well pureed – at least 2 minutes. Stop at least once during the process to scrape down the bowl.
  4. Add the egg yolks, milk, and heavy cream. Blend well again.
  5. In a thin stream add the syrup to the food processor while running (you don’t want it to cook the shrimp).
  6. Spread the flour over the batter and whisk or blend to combine.
  7. Whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until they form stiff peaks.
  8. Add the whites to the shrimp mixture and gently fold together.
  9. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 30 minutes. The omelet will be puffed and golden brown and you can test it just like a cake with a toothpick for doneness. I had to cook mine a few extra minutes so I partly suspect that Morimoto uses convection ovens and so the temperature should really be 375F, but I don’t want to recommend that until I try it.
  10. Let cool and cut into small pieces the size of sushi.
  11. Serve with the dipping sauces or wasabi and soya sauce. We also had the naan and some veggies sticks.

Dipping Sauces – Recipes

Based on the recipes from Morimoto

Wasabi Aioli

1/4 c sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp gin
1 c mayo
2 tbsp wasabi paste
1 tbsp sweetened condensed milk

  1.  Whisk the sugar, lemon, and gin in a small bowl.
  2. Add the mayo, wasabi, and condensed milk and whisk until smooth.

Spicy Mayo

1 c mayo
1 tbsp Korean chile paste (kochujan)
1 tbsp sweetened condensed milk
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp dried crushed hot pepper flakes, preferably Korean
1 tsp grand marnier
1 tsp salt

  1.  Mix everything together in a small bowl

Ranch Dressing

1/2 c buttermilk
1/2 c sour cream
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt

  1.  Mix everything together in a small bowl

Crab Naan

Based on the recipe from Morimoto

2 c flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c whole milk
1 large egg, whisked
2 tbsp plain yogurt
Olive oil
4 oz (100g) fresh crab meat, picked through and flaked

  1.  In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  2. Make a well in the centre and add the milk, egg, and yogurt. Mix the wet ingredients together in the well and then incorporate the dry ingredients.
  3. Mix until you form a soft dough and then turn onto a floured surface to knead for about 3 minutes until smooth. If the dough is too sticky, add a little extra flour until it becomes smooth.
  4. Cut the dough into 4 pieces and shape each into a ball. Using your hands coat the balls lightly with olive oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand for 30 minutes.
  5. Preheat the oven to 450F and position your racks to the centre and upper third. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. On a lightly floured surface , roll out the dough into a thin 10-inch oval. Sprinkle 1/4 of the crab over the length of the oval and then fold the dough in half lengthwise.
  7. Roll out the dough again into a 10 inch long oval and transfer to the baking sheets. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  8. Bake the naan, switching the baking sheets half way through the cooking, for 7-8 minutes and lightly browned. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Savory Eggs Series

Part 1 – Parsee Scrambled Eggs

Part 2 – Oeufs en Gelée

Part 3 – Baked Eggs with Ratatouille

Part 4 – Pickled Eggs

Part 5 – Egg Curry

Part 6 – Japanese Egg Castella

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One comment

  • Marlon
    November 13, 2012 - 2:38 am | Permalink

    love your taste in Sake, i drink that stuff all the time, little overpriced but its worth it :)

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