The Tamago is Not Just a Regular Omelette

Japanese Omelette Vs American Omelette

“Tamago” actually means “egg” in Japanese, or “Tamagoyaki,” a Japanese omelet dish, where the ‘yaki’ means fry. When Japanese people say tamagoyaki, it refers to thick rolled egg. It is a staple in Japan and the Japanese enjoy this dish several ways – for breakfast, in their bento or as nigiri sushi.

A Japanese omelet is made by combining eggs, rice vinegar, and usually sugar, soy sauce, and even sake in some instances. It is prepared by folding over the egg many times as it cooks, forming a series of thin layers. It is often served as nigiri sushi at most Japanese restaurants. It has a different texture due to the multiple layers and slightly sweet in taste. Tamago is not just egg, but a testament to the quality of a restaurant, not to mention its chef.

While modern tamago is usually just sliced up egg layered on top of each other, traditionally tamago was a test of the chef’s mettle. Tamago is made from one single layer, folded upon itself many times. A poorly skilled chef will end up with a broken or messy tamagoyaki. The art and presentation of a perfect tamagoyaki was a proud and honorable accomplishment, and is use to assess the sushi chef’s skills.

There is special square or rectangle shaped frying pan for only rolling eggs, called “Tamagoyakiki”. Some regions in Japan use a square one, others use rectangular. A copper pan is recommended because of it’s great heat conduction. The cooking temperature is important to make fluffy and bouncy rolled eggs. A copper pan is great to heat up quickly and even after pouring the egg mixture in, it does not drop the temperature dramatically.

How is the Japanese omelette different from the traditional American omelette? The American omelette has similarities and differences with tamagoyaki. They are both made by beating eggs inside a bowl and pouring the mixture into a nonstick skillet pan. It can also be seasoned in different ways, also similar to how American omelets can have several ingredients added to it. The Japanese version include dashi (Japanese stock made from dried kelp), bonito flakes, soy sauce, sugar, rice vinegar and even sake.

However, the number of times the tamago is folded exceeds the typical American omelet. Folding the cooking egg multiple times creates several thin layers, turning the end product into something that looks like little bars of gold. Also, the tamago is cooked using a good tamagoyaki pan, which can be pricey.

Perfect Tamago in Bothell

Know that at Sushi Hana, you are getting perfect tamago sushi created with art and skill like no other this side of Bothell. Come see us whenever you crave sushi.

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