This is a kind of Japanese custard which people think requires some remarkably complex technique. It’s actually easier to make than a poached egg. Its appeal lies primarily in the soft creamy texture, especially when contrasted with crunchy or chewy garnishes. In flavor it can be as delicate or as intense as you like in the morning, and is entirely dependent on the strength of the stock you use. The key to success, I discovered after much travail, is adhering to a simple formula and precise timing and after that you can use any ingredients you like. Here is a relatively classic version, though garnished according to my personal whim.
1 jumbo egg
½ tsp mirin
½ tsp soy sauce
2 small pieces of lightly salted salmon
A few whisps of dill, Thin wedge of tomato, 1 shiitake mushroom, 1 tsp neutral oil
Meanwhile cook your mushroom in oil, and char the tomato too, then set aside.
Remove the teacup from the pot and let rest 3 minutes. Remove the tin foil and arrange the garnishes on top. Serve at once with a spoon while still warm.
Now here’s the best part, you can use absolutely any kind of stock and any garnishes you like. An intense mushroom stock was remarkable with sour cream and chives and a few sliced of truffle for extravagance. Chicken stock was incredible in custard form, especially contrasted with crunchy sweet corn fried in butter, with a few chewy chicken meatballs to garnish. A shellfish stock with shrimp would be so delightful too. I leave this to your imagination.