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Dashi with Egg Custard and Opah Ham

This advanced level take on the classic Japanese soup provides a perfect umami balance thanks to a mirin- and seaweed-based broth, delicate egg custard and unique addition of opah ham. Courtesy Michelle Allen and Miguel Higuera, Born & Raised


For the dashi base:

  • 2 qt. water
  • 4 pieces of dried kombu
  • 2 oz. bonito flakes

For the dashi soup:

  • 4 Tbsp mirin
  • 300 mL dashi base
  • 2 Tbsp white soy sauce

For the egg custard:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 300 mL dashi base
  • 1 Tbsp white soy sauce
  • Pinch of salt

For the Ponzu garnish:

  • 2 blood oranges, juiced
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp mirin

For the puffed wild rice garnish:

  • 1 cup oil
  • 4 Tbsp wild rice
  • Togarashi
  • Salt

Additional garnish:

  • Scallions, sliced
  • Sesame oil
  • Opah ham, thinly sliced

How to Prepare:

  1. Make the dashi base by heating water with the kombu and turn it off right before it boils. Steep the kombu for 10 min and strain. Add the bonito flakes and steep for 30 min. Strain again and set aside.
  2. Make the dashi soup by combining the mirin, white soy sauce and 300 mL of dashi base. This will be the soup for the finished dish. 
  3. Next, make the egg custard:
  4. Gently whisk the eggs until the whites and yolks are completely combined. Slowly stir in the rest of the ingredients, making sure there are no air bubbles. Oil a ramekin or small baking dish and pour in egg mixture.
  5. In a large pot, add 2 inches of water with a resting rack in the middle of the pot. Bring water to a boil. Put the ramekin with the egg mixture into the pot, on the rack and cover with a lid and let it steam for 15 min or more. Check with a toothpick if the egg is still wet in the middle. It should have the firmness of a custard or soft tofu. Remove ramekin from pot and let it cool.
  6. Make the Ponzu by mixing together the blood orange juice, soy sauce and mirin. Set aside.
  7. Make the puffed rice by heating oil on medium high heat. Throw in one grain of rice to test the heat. If it puffs within seconds, the oil is ready. Add all the rice and remove immediately after it puffs, the rice will burn easily. Drain rice on a paper towel. Season with togarashi and salt, to taste.
  8. To plate, put dashi soup in a bowl. Add several scoops of cool egg tofu. Toss scallions in ponzu, use as garnish on egg tofu. Finish with a drizzle with sesame oil and top with puffed wild rice and opah ham.


Opah Belly

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