How to prepare other ingredients
Eggs - removing the chalaza
The chalaza serves the role of holding an egg yolk in place. It is edible, but if you prefer, pick it up with cooking chopsticks (or a fork) to remove.
Eggs - beating
When making a Japanese fried egg omelet, steamed egg custard or such where you desire soft and smooth eggs keep your chopsticks low in the bowl and beat using small movements as if slicing through the egg white. For scrambled eggs and egg-drop dishes, if you beat using big movements and in a way that does not fully mix the yolks with the whites, you will achieve fluffy eggs when cooked.
Eggs - separating the egg yolk and egg white
Crack the shell so that it is evenly divided into 2 halves. Over a bowl to catch the egg white, pass the egg yolk back and forth between the two egg shell halves. The trick to this method is splitting the egg shell in as perfect halves as possible at the start.
Eggs - how to make usuyaki tamago or thin Japanese-style omelet
- sake (cooking sake)
- potato starch (or corn starch)
- vegetable oil
1. Crack open and beat the eggs together, add in the salt, sake and potato starch and mix in well.
2. Strain through an all-purpose strainer. This step helps to achieve a smoother, thinner omelet.
3. Use a paper towel lightly dipped in vegetable oil to lighly coat a heated square-shaped fry pan.
4. Pour a ladle of the egg mixture into the pan.
5. Swirl the pan to evenly distribute the egg mixture over the entire pan.
6. Once the egg becomes cooked on the surface, use one cooking chopstick to pick up and flip over the usuyaki tamago. Allow to cook on the opposite side for one moment, then remove onto a cutting board. Repeat this process with the remaining egg mixture.
7. Stack the usuyaki tamago and cut into thin strips. If you roll these up first, it will be easier to thinly slice up.
Eggs - boiling
Remove the eggs from a refrigerator about 30 minutes prior to return to room temperature. Place a small amount of salt into boiled water, then add in the eggs. Using a ladle to gently add in the eggs can help prevent cracking. Once the desired boiling time has passed, remove the eggs into cold water and allow to cool completely.
Eggs - peeling
If you make several small cracks in the shell, it will be easier to peel. Also, immediately placing boiled eggs into ice cold water will also make peeling easier.