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Egg Custard Soup

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70-85 g (2 -3 oz) chicken breast, skinned
1 teaspoon each sake and shoyu
4 raw prawns, peeled and deveined
4 fresh shiitake or button mushrooms
cress to garnish

450 ml (16 fl oz/2 cups) dashi, or chicken stock
teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon mirin or tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon shoyu
3 eggs, beaten


Serves: 4


Slice chicken diagonally into small pieces; sprinkle with sake and the 1 teaspoon shoyu. Marinate the chicken for 15 minutes, then drain. Parboil the prawns for 30 seconds and drain. Cut the stems off the mushrooms and quarter each one by slicing diagonally at the thickest part to make pieces with an even thickness. To make the stock, heat the dashi or chicken stock and season with the salt, mirin and 1 tablespoon shoyu. Allow to cool down, then gradually pour into beaten eggs, stirring gently all the time. (The mixture should not form bubbles or foam.) Divide the prawns, chicken and mushrooms between 4 soup or tea cups and pour in egg soup until the cups are three quarters full. Cover the cups with foil. Place in a steamer and steam, covered, over low heat for 25-30 minutes. Arrange a few sprigs of cress on top, leave covered for 5 minutes, then serve hot.

Variation: Cook cups in oven in a shallow baking dish half-filled with hot water at 220C (425F/Gas 7) for 25 minutes until set.

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