One of the neatest things about cooking Chinese food is that there are so many alternative recipes/ingredients for different dishes and alternative ways of cooking them. The various versions of Egg Foo Yung are many and they can be Wok Stir Fried then skillet fried or deep fried. Even the sauces used with that dish vary.
The result of all the variation is to stimulate the chef to think about and to select and create variants of the basic dishes to achieve particular results. As I have tasted many variations in different restaurants over many years I have developed my own set of standards. I started making pork egg foo yung in the 1970’s as a result of learning so much from my great friend Dora Clark who was Chinese and a great cook.
My early success was nice but there was a hiatus from Chinese cooking of twenty years as I was learning about different cuisines. A few years ago I again made pork egg foo yung and I was pleased with the result. Alas, my wife Marie did not care for any kind of Chinese food so I did not repeat my success. Then about a year ago I tried making it for my present wife, Janet, and it was a failure. Worse, I couldn’t initially figure out what went wrong. All I knew was that the puffy pancake effect didn’t happen and I wound up with scrambled eggs and too many other ingredients.
It is obvious that balance is necessary across all the ingredients for the egg to hold the mixture together. But recently I decided to make a pork and shrimp egg foo yung using my new (at least to me) Chinese cookbook. The recipes and variety of possible ingredients really piqued my interest. Beyond that I remembered my recent failure and I went into think mode to figure out how to make a truly superior egg foo yung with lots of filling ingredients and with a resulting attractive presentation.
This recipe is the result of my musings and an example of cooking creativity. My recipe is even healthier than those found in my new Chinese cookbook as I use less peanut oil than required for frying egg foo yung. What I did was realize that the dish could be made like miniature soufflés simply by adding some half and half to the raw beaten eggs. This is atypical of Chinese cooking as dairy products, especially milk products, are seldom used, for Chinese people often have difficulty digesting milk products. Then I used a non-stick mini bundt tray with six openings that each hold between a cup to a cup and a half of product in volume. I am grateful that Marie acquired the tray sometime in the past. Do note that cupcake trays could also be used.
Eureka! No longer did I have to create the pancakes of typical egg foo yung or worry about them holding together during frying. If fact, the frying of the egg mixture was eliminated entirely. All I did was lightly spray the non-stick mini bundt openings with Pam®. Then I simply ladled the egg and other ingredients mixture into the pan openings and baked them at 350º F for fifteen minutes. They came out totally perfect, they were attractive, and the bundt opening in the center of each serving was ideal later for holding some of the sauce I made to pour over the egg foo yung. Now I am most pleased to offer this recipe to you as I know it is very superior.
Oh, before I forget, white rice is a perfect accompaniment for this dish. You may want to cook the rice first. J
1 tsp. of sesame oil
1 cup of chicken broth
1 ½ tsp. of cornstarch
1 tsp. of soy sauce
Egg, meat, shrimp and vegetable mixture:
½ lb. of raw lean pork (one thick pork chop), shaved and chopped, all fat removed
½ lb. of raw deveined shelled medium size shrimp cut into slivers
1 baby bok choy, chopped fine with green areas removed (about ½ cup)
1 small stalk of celery, diced
¼ cup of sweet onion, shaved thin
1/3 cup of canned bean sprouts
1/3 cup of canned bamboo shoots, chopped
1 cup of fresh oyster mushrooms, chopped fine
2 scallions, finely diced, green areas included
8 jumbo eggs (or 10 extra large or 12 large)
¼ cup of half and half
¼ tsp. of black pepper
½ tsp. of sea salt
2 tbsp. of soy sauce
3 tbsp. of peanut oil
Turn one oven on and set it at 350ºF. Turn a second oven on and set it at 200ºF. Put a serving plate into the second oven.
Make the sauce by putting all of the sauce ingredients into a small saucepan and heating it to boiling on medium heat while stirring. When the sauce clarifies and thickens it is done and it can be poured into a one and one half cup serving bowl, which should be placed on a saucer and put into the warm 200º F oven.
Prepare the pork and the shrimp as described above in the ingredients list. Use a wooden cutting board and a very sharp knife. Set them aside.
Prepare all of the vegetables as described in the list of ingredients and put them into a one quart bowl. Add the salt and pepper and soy sauce to the bowl.
Mix the eggs using an electric mixer on medium high speed for two to three minutes. Add the half and half and continue mixing for one minute. Set the mixture aside.
Put the peanut oil into a large Wok and heat the Wok on high heat until the oil is very hot. You can test how hot the oil is by putting a tiny piece of pork in it and seeing if it fries instantly. I much prefer doing that as an alternative to waiting for the oil to smoke, which I consider to be pointless and potentially dangerous. Put all of the pork into the oil and stir fry it rapidly with a thin hard polymer slotted spoon until it is no longer pink.
Add the shrimp to the pork and stir fry the mixture rapidly until the shrimp is pink.
Add all of the vegetables/seasonings and mix them well with the pork and shrimp and stir fry the mixture for one minute. Cover the Wok with a lid and adjust the heat to medium and let the mixture steam for three minutes.
Pour the stir fried mixture onto a large plate and let it cool to close to room temperature. Mix it gently a few times during the cooling period of about ten minutes to get the warmer parts exposed to air to aid the cooling process.
Add the cooled stir fried mixture to the egg and half and half mixture and stir well.
Spray a small amount of Pam® onto the surface of six mini bundt pan openings.
Stir the egg foo yung mixture to assure even distribution of the ingredients and ladle equal amounts of the mixture into the bundt pan openings.
Bake the egg foo yung for 15 minutes at 350ºF.
Invert the mini bundt pan above the warmed serving plate and shake it gently. The finished pieces of egg foo yung will fall out easily.
Serve the completed pork and shrimp egg foo yung along with the sauce.
Ladle about 2 ounces of sauce over each portion of the egg foo yung.