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Tamago Kake Gohan

Aptly following Easter Sunday and the tradition of hunting for colored eggs, across “the pond” in Japan, they have a dish called Tamago Kake Gohan.

Also known as “TKG”, it’s a popular quick breakfast in Japan, simply being a raw egg served atop a bowl of rice. “Tamago kake Gohan” literally essentially  translating to “egg-splashed rice”.

Locally-raised in Waimanalo at Kaneshiro Farm, you can now get these precious eggs under the brand Waimana TKG at Don Quijote, Marukai and a few other local retailers.

The TKG eggs sold at Don Quijote and Marukai are sized as Grade A Large. However the ones I got are from my neighbor, which are Medium Grade A. He bought them direct from Kaneshiro Farm in Waimanalo, where can buy an entire crate of 30 farm-fresh Hawaii-raised TKG eggs for just $9!

Notice how the albumen clings tightly to the yolk with these farm-fresh eggs, something you often don’t find in those shipped from the mainland…

Raw is the key, as “TKG” eggs are safe to use as such, with no need to be thoroughly cooked. At the same time, these special eggs sport a unique bold yolk color, bordering on “deep” yellow to orange. And THAT to me is the coolest part.

You simply crack the egg over a bowl of hot steamed rice, add a dash of shoyu, stir to let the hot rice cook the egg white and enjoy. Of which to note, make a “pocket” in the center of the rice in the bowl, so that the yolk sits nicely in the center.

In this first run (no pun intended), I went “balls out”, adding not just negi, but Maui Brand Spicy Takuan (pickled Japanese radish/daikon) and Beni Shoga (tart pickled ginger), along with what is THE key “ingrediment”, Kawanaka Shoyu from Hiroshima…


Kawanaka Dashi Shoyu (the on the left), available at Don Quijote (Oahu) in the Japanese sauce aisle

I learned about Kawanaka Dashi Shoyu from Paul Uyehara, president of Aloha Tofu, where they sell their special Oboro Tofu with a packet of this stuff. Imported from Hiroshima, Japan, it’s essentially shoyu infused with the flavor of Bonito, which is dried skipjack tuna. So it has this wonderful “meaty”, totally “umami-fied” flavor profile. It’s the PERFECT marriage with the rich warmed-up raw egg yolk and hot rice. So oishii, if you’re a shoyu fan (who isn’t in Hawaii), you MUST get this Kawanaka Dashi Shoyu!

With that, hai, itadakimasu….

Oh yeah, Tamago Kake Gohan, The Tasty Island style, adding Beni Shoga (acidic pickled ginger), Maui Spiced Takuan (pickled daikon/turnip) and negi (green onion) to kick it up!

Bus’ that golden “TKG” yolk all ovah’ da’ rice, and brah, MEAN! Then you mix ‘dat buggah like ‘dis…

Braddah, KILLAHZ! Sugoi oshii desu yo!

That was version “A”, where you simply add the entire raw TKG egg over the bowl of hot rice. Then there’s version “B”, where you separate the yolk from the white, and add the white to the rice first before putting the yolk on it…

You stir the TKG egg white vigorously into the hot rice to form a sort of porridge, almost like Chinese Jook, allowing the hot rice to cook the white part a bit more. I would say it’s almost “Natto’ish” doing it this way, if you know what I mean (you do, right?).

Then on goes the yolk, shoyu and other stuffs (if you roll how I roll)…

Oops. Small ‘kine ‘wen pour too much Kawanaka Shoyu on top da’ rice, but @ss alright. That stuff is so ono, she still go.

Money shot…

Again, stir it like vigorously you mean it, then whack that buggah’…

Dude. Either version “A” or “B” (slight difference in texture), you don’t even know how AMAZING this tastes. The combination of the fresh “TKG” egg, especially with that golden yolk from Kaneshiro Farm out in Waimanalo, along with the umami factor from the bonito-infused Kawanaka Dashi Shoyu, tart contrast of the Beni Shoga, pungent aromatic profile of the Maui Spicy Takuan, finished off by the herbal earthy element from the Negi ROCK THE HOUSE.

Related links:
Isle Egg Crisis – Honolulu Star Bulletin archives

P.S. Here’s some let’s say “Festively decorated” Easter hats some folks wore at a bar in Waikiki on Easter Sunday evening…

5 thoughts on “Tamago Kake Gohan

  • March 29, 2016 at 1:41 pm
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    Have you seen the pilot of “Family Ingredients” where Alan Wong makes his favorite dish, tamago kake gohan?  Excellent.

    Also, those eggs would be really good for sukiyaki!

    Reply
  • March 30, 2016 at 12:06 pm
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    Yeah, Alan et al made it by putting HOT rice in a bowl, creating a circle in the middle, cracking a raw egg into that circle with shoyu, froth the egg, then mix the rice and egg.

    My dad’s version was just mixing “just cooked” HOT rice into mixed raw egg and shoyu, mixing it, and eating with fried SPAM. sigh! Such memories.

    Reply
    • March 31, 2016 at 10:32 am
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      That’s the way my bachan made it; mix the raw egg with some shoyu and then put hot rice in and mix it up. She used to call it “tamago-meshi” Some sort of old school pidgin to describe beating the egg, I guess. Most times, no spam, though.

      My dad used to make a variation with fried sunny side up eggs and rice and shoyu for breakfast and mix in whatever meat was on the plate (bacon, spam, etc)

      Gunnfunnit, now I gatta go home and make some…mmmmmmm

      Reply
  • March 30, 2016 at 1:19 pm
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    @ Lori – While for the most part kept simple, TKG seems to be done in varied ways of what goes in the bowl when, beaten or not and toppings, etc, just like my take on it. So funny your dad ate Tamago Kake Gohan with SPAM. So local lol. Next time I make TKG, I’m hitting it with Furikake and an Ume.

    There’s also a frozen TKG method, where you freeze the raw egg, then let it defrost, which doing so allows you to easily separate the still soft yolk from the white hashi, like this rubbery yolk ball, which you can then place in an omusubi and eat like that (no white part). I’m so trying that as well!

    @ Debbie-Chan – I’ve heard of the ‘Family Ingredients’ series, however haven’t seen any aired episodes in its entiretly on PBS, just short online intro’ clips. That show is also hosted by Ed Kenney of Town Restaurant and Kaimuki Superette. Both of them are such down-to-earth guys in person. I thought Chef Jon Matsubara of Ciao Mein fame was also on that show? Jon Matsubara is now (or started the restaurant as) the Executive Chef for Forty Carrots in Bloomingdale’s Ala Moana.

    In that “Cooking with Dog” Japanese cooking lessons video series on YouTube I have embedded here, the wife of the host dips Beef Sukiyaki in a beaten raw TKG egg, which did indeed look oishii.

    I’m hoping to make it to Kaneshiro Farm in Waimanalo this weekend to get a crate so I can experiment more with these awesome TKG eggs.I’d like try doing a TKG Loco Moco, and do a comparison of French Toast made battered with locally-raised TKG eggs compared to mainland eggs. It would be interesting if you could tell the difference in that type of more convoluted application. I also have an interesting bread (cake) I’ll be using for that French Toast, which will make it even more interesting!

    While at the Waimanalo Farm, hopefully I can do some Q&A with the owners and get some nice photos of the farm and how they raise the chickens and produce the eggs.

     

    Reply
  • April 2, 2016 at 9:23 pm
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    A local blogger first 411’d it on her blog and I got them from Marukai becuz I was dying to eat Sukiyaki dipped in raw egg for years but too scared cuz of all the bad stuff from reg. eggs.  Wow that egg is super sweet (unlike regular eggs) and added to the sukiyaki flavor. I did eat it udon and fried but the difference was not discernable between a regular egg. We certainly enjoyed eating it raw and so glad finally we are safely able to.

    Reply

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