Chawan-mushi Recipe

Chawan-mushi

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Ingredients

Serves 4
Time Required: about 35 minutes

4 small serving cups or small mugs
steamer

4-8 small shrimp
1 fillet chicken breast
small quanity of carrot (about 2 inch piece)
2 shiitake mushroom
4 ginkgo nuts (canned is easier)
5 or 6 stalks trefoil (cut into 1 1/5- inch lengths)
4 slices kamaboko fish paste
4 small eggs
sake
salt

For Mixture:
2 1/2 cups stock (can use Japanese stock- tsuyu)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp light soy sauce
1 tsp mirin Japanese sweet cooking wine
~1 oz sake

How to make Chawan-mushi


1. Devein small shrimps and put into a small pot. Add 1 tbsp sake, 2 tbsp water and a pinch of salt and simmer while stirring until all the liquid is gone. Skin the shrimps.

2. If you do not use the canned kind of ginkgo nuts, remove the shells of the ginkgo nuts, put into a small pot. Add just enough water to cover the gingko nuts, as well as a pinch of salt, and boil. Remove the thin film around the nuts. If you use the canned ginkgo nuts, just drain and set aside.

3. Cut carrot crosswise into about 1/16-inch peices and stamp out into a flower shape. (cutting out small triangles with the tip of your knife all around the carrot, creating a shape of a flower. this is just for looks, so if it is too difficult, you can just keep the carrot in its circular shape.) Boil carrots in lightly salted water briefly.

4. Chop stem off of shiitake mushroom, and cut thinly.

5. Remove skin and sinew from chicken fillet, cut diagonally and sprinkle on a small amount of salt and sake.

6. Beat eggs in a bowl but do not froth. Add all ingredients from Mixture and mix well. Strain egg stock mixture.

7. Place chicken in serving cups and using a ladle gently pour egg stock mixture until 60 to 70% full. Transfer cups to a preheated steamer. Steam over high heat for about 1 minute with the lid slightly askew.

8. Then steam over a low heat for 6 to 7 minutes with the steamer completely covered.

9. When the surface of the custard is set, place the shiitake mushroom, kamaboko, small shrimps, gingko nuts and carrot on top of it and pour in the remaining egg stock mixture until 80 to 90% full.

10. Steam over a high heat for about 1 minute with the lid slightly askew.

11. Then steam over a low heat for 6 to 7 minutes with the steamer completely covered.

12. Remove the cups from steamer, and garnish with the trefoil stalks.

TIPS:
-Don't steam chawan mushi over a high heat for a long time, otherwise it will be come spongy (like my picture) =(
-To see whether or not chawan mushi is done, interst a toothpick in the center. When it comes out clean, it is ready to serve.

VARIATIONS:
-Lily root, matsutake mushrooms and shimeji mushrooms can also be added.

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