Egg Foo Young - An Explosion of Flavors and Textures

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Egg Foo Young - An Explosion of Flavors and Textures

Egg foo young is a timeless American Chinese dish that has captured the hearts of restaurant goers with its simple ingredients and great textures and flavors.

Along with chop suey, the young foo egg is considered one of the O.G. American Chinese Classics. In essence, egg foo young is an omelette, but not just any omelette.

It has a soft and fluffy interior with perfectly browned and crisp edges. A dollop of sauce adds layers of texture and a hint of flavor as it seeps into the crispy cracks.

Using a wok to lay Foo Young eggs

Although you don't need a wok for very young eggs, a wok is the best container for this recipe.

As woks have a small base with steep walls, this allows the very young egg to be fried without adding too much oil.

Since the base is smaller than a skillet, it also helps prevent the tortilla from spreading too fast and thin.

Use the chopstick trick

A thermometer is the easiest method to determine if the oil is the proper temperature. If you don't have one handy, use this favorite trick of Chinese cooks.

Dip a wooden toothpick or the thin handle of a wooden spoon into the hot oil to see if it bubbles.

If there is slight bubbling, the oil is close to 325°F.

If there is vigorous bubbling around the toothpick or handle, the temperature has reached 350°F, which is excellent for most frying.

What is cornstarch paste?

Cornstarch helps thicken liquid, such as sauce, without imparting any flavor. Cornstarch paste is made by dissolving cornstarch in a small amount of water, usually in a one to one ratio.

For example, one tablespoon of cornstarch dissolved in one tablespoon of water will make one tablespoon of cornstarch paste.

Mixing and dissolving the cornstarch is crucial, as it tends to clump when too much liquid is added.

By mixing it up and dissolving it in a small amount of water, it's easier to distribute without having sticky cornstarch bubbles floating around in the broth.

Foo Young Egg Setting

Just like any other omelet, the foo young egg is a clever container for restaurants (and you!) to use whatever is on hand and create a delicious new meal out of it.

Feel free to substitute a protein of your choice for the shrimp.

Precook the protein, as the new eggs only take a few minutes to cook on each side, but not long enough to cook the raw meat without burning the tortilla.

Mix in other thinly sliced quick-cooking vegetables, such as shredded carrots or cabbage.


for the sauce

  • 1 cup unsalted beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon of water

For the omelette

  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon of water
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 green onion, sliced green and white parts
  • 1 cup mung bean sprouts
  • 20 medium shrimp, peeled and shelled, thawed if frozen and dried
  • 2 to 3 cups vegetable or canola oil, as needed, for frying

To serve

  • 2 cups of cooked jasmine rice


Make the sauce:

In a small pot, add the beef broth, soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, oyster sauce, and white pepper powder over medium heat. Mix and bring to a simmer.

Combine cornstarch and water in a small bowl and whisk to dissolve. Add to skillet and beat until sauce thickens and coats back of spoon, 2 to 3 minutes.

Cover the saucepan with a lid and keep warm on the lowest possible heat.

Make the foo young egg batter:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water until dissolved. Add the eggs, salt and sugar. Beat until well combined and there are no more egg white lumps.

Add green onion, bean sprouts, and shrimp. Stir until everything is evenly coated.

Fry the egg well again:

Add vegetable oil to a large wok; it should reach about 2 inches on the sides. Heat oil over medium-high heat to 350°F or until vigorous bubbles form around an inserted wooden toothpick.

Using a ladle, gently and slowly add 1/4 of the tortilla batter. The young foo egg should immediately bubble and swell as if by magic.

Fry until golden and crisp on each side, about 2 minutes per side. If there are light spots, use a ladle to gently baste with hot oil.

Remove the tortilla and place it on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Let cool for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, repeat with the remaining dough to make 4 tortillas.

If needed, add more oil to the pan between batches.

Serve and enjoy:

Place each very young egg on a bed of rice. Pour the hot sauce over the top and serve immediately.

See how to make this easy and delicious recipe in this video tutorial

Souce: Chinese Cooking Demystified

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