Konnichiwa! When I left school I went to Japan for a couple of months and just fell in love. It’s just the most amazing place.
We were there when around Easter, when all the cherry blossom came out and it’s just ridiculously beautiful. For just a couple of days, the whole place turns into a giant pink candyfloss for those lucky enough to be there to enjoy it. Then before you know it, the blossom falls and all the pink disappears, for another year. We disappeared into the mountains to go skiing, we went to onsens (Japanese hot springs) and just generally fell in love with the place.
But possibly more than anything else I fell madly, deeply and irrevocably in love with the food. We spent our days slurping noodles, feasting on sushi and gobbling ramen. I still dream about the food.
I ate more sushi in those short months than most people will eat in a lifetime. One of the things I had for the first time out there was the Japanese omelette or tamagoyaki. It’s so much more interesting than an English omelette! Oooh controversial! No, but it’s completely different to what we call an omelette here in the UK. The tamagoyaki is both sweet and savoury at the same time and deliciously satisfying with its many folded layers. It’s like Joseph’s coat of many colours, but made of egg. And only one colour.
It’s such a great thing to be able to whip up for breakfast, or to take with you in a packed lunch. The first time you make it, you will probably think to yourself, “Margie! Are you sure about this? What’s going on??” I won’t be able to be there to reassure you, as I have a job, but I promise it will all be okay. All will become clear, just persevere and keep going! It’s so delicious!
The Japanese have a special square frying pan to make these omelettes. I actually bought my dad one from Muji about 5 years ago which he has never used. Maybe I will steal it back. Can you do that with presents? But in the absence of my dad’s pan, I just use a small non stick frying pan that I use for pancakes and it works like a charm. Just do make sure it’s non stick. UNLESS…you love burnt eggs and washing up.
I can easily eat this myself for breakfast, but if you are less greedy you could share it. For lunch it would easily serve 2 (if served with salad and some brown rice)
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon honey (or coconut sugar…or sugar if you please)
- 1 teaspoon mirin (This is Japanese rice wine for cooking - any asian market or the ‘world cuisine’ section of large supermarkets)
- ½ teaspoon soy sauce
- tiny pinch salt
- First of all, mix the eggs, salt, soy sauce, honey and Mirin in a bowl. I use a fork and just give it a good whisk to make sure all the eggs are broken up and the seasoning is mixed through
- Then, heat a pan at medium high temperature and add a little oil. Do this in the same way you would with pancakes, where you just brush a light layer of oil on, using a piece of kitchen roll if you want.
- I don’t have the special rectangular Tamagoyaki pan, so I just use a round pan and it works perfectly well. Yay.
- Now, pour a thin layer of egg mixture in the pan. Swirl it around a bit like when you make a pancake.
- After the thin egg has set a little, gently roll into a log. You want to start to rolling when the bottom of the egg has set but there is still a little liquid on top because if you let the egg cook too much, it will not stick as you roll the log. I try to pretend I am Japanese and use chopsticks to do the rolling, but you can also use a spatula.
- You will now have an omelette log at one end of the pan. Congratulations!
- Leave it there, and pour some more egg mixture to again cover the bottom of the pan. Gently lift up the roll of egg and let the new eggy mixture go under the roll as well.
- After the new layer has begun to set, roll the log back onto the the cooked thin egg and roll to the other end of the pan.
- Repeat adding egg to the pan and rolling back and forth until the egg is used up.
- When you're done, remove the omelette from the pan and let it cool for a couple of minutes before slicing. Or leave to cool completely if you aren’t eating it immediately. I actually prefer it at room temperature, so if you can resist it, let it cool a little. Top tip.
To make it look pretty, you can slice the ends of the log off (although make sure you gobble them…chefs perks) and then slice the log into 1/2″ pieces.
I love this as it is for breakfast, so simple and so yum. Or serve with homemade sushi, or a simple bowl of brown rice with some soy sauce and chopped spring onions. Yes!
Do give it a go this weekend, I know you will love it!
Over and out x