Many years ago, I had the opportunity to stay with my late grandmother in Ipoh. I remember vividly that she made me this humble egg custard dessert that I loved so much. As humble as it was, it was deemed a luxury to us back then. It was silky smooth. It was saporous sweet. And I was a hungry kid. There couldn't be a better match.
Now that I am all grown up, I realised what this dish is all about. Steamed egg with ginger juice is actually a very traditional Chinese dessert of the Cantonese clan. No wonder my grandmother had this dish up her sleeves. She was Cantonese. This steamed egg with ginger juice is a pretty famous dessert in Hong Kong too. My grandmother's steamed egg with ginger juice, which I totally adore and vouch for, used whole eggs and ginger only, unlike other recipes whereby milk is also added. Some of nowadays recipe even reduced the egg yolks to make it healthier. But I only like it one way, that is how my grandmother made it. In case you are wondering what does it taste like, the custard tasted like Tong Kee's famous egg tart minus the tart shell.
This is a very straight-forwad recipe. Ginger, besides for its nutritional values, is used here to stave off those eggy smell. The recipe comprises only five easily available everyday ingredients that most pantries would have. In order to make the custard smooth and silky, a ratio of 1 to 1.8 egg to water is used here. Normally, a ratio of 1 to 1.5 is enough to get a silky soft custard but because I accounted for evaporation as well, I added more water (you could read all about how to make a good custard here). Traditionally, ginger juice is extracted, I simplified the method by dumping the pounded ginger into the boiling water. Why add another step to extract the ginger juice when you are going to sieve it later? Just boil the flavour out. Within 10 minutes, the custard was in the steamer, waiting for its fate. And I was waiting for my yummy dessert.
Steamed Egg with Ginger Juice 姜汁炖蛋For two person
3 eggs (175 ml)
300 ml water
40 g rock sugar
1 inch ginger (size of thumb), pounded
2 pandan leaves (optional)
1. Pound ginger and dump everything (except eggs) into a saucepan. Cook until rock sugar dissolves. Remove from fire and set aside for 2-3 minutes to cool a little. Meanwhile, prepare steamer.
3 Pour the sieved custard into two individual bowls, cover and steam for 30 minutes in slow fire. If you want it fast, do not cover and steam in medium heat for 15 minutes.
4. Remove from fire and serve immediately.
1. The length of time used to cook the custard would depend on the bowls used and the temperature. The slower the fire, the more silky it would be.
2. If you like a more creamy texture, simply replace water with milk.
3. To retain more of its nutritional values, you could double-boil the eggs (hence, the word "炖").
Find out more about how to make a good custard here: