Tomato eggs (蕃茄炒蛋/ 西红柿炒蛋) is home-cooked comfort food popular in Chinese families. It is a quick and easy dish that you can get onto the dining table in 15 minutes.
I have been cooking for many years both for work and at home. It is not always necessary to use multiple ingredients and involve complicated techniques to prepare a fantastic dish. Tomato and egg stir fry is one of these typical examples.
To do this, you need to look for a winning combination of ingredients. Egg and tomatoes are the perfect matches, which are high in umami. Therefore, it only needs a few basic seasonings to bring out its flavor.
How to prepare the tomato eggs stir-fry
Chinese tomato eggs are one of the simplest stir-fry dishes you can make. The only catch is that the egg and tomato must be cooked separately. There’s no shortcut for this step.
Each family likes to cook it differently. My family tomato eggs recipe is to leave the egg barely cooked and combine with the slightly mashed tomatoes to get a smooth texture.
Here are the steps:
1. Stir-fry the tomatoes
Choose the ripe and sweet tomatoes for this recipe. You can remove the skin, but it is not crucial because if you cut the tomatoes into small dice and cook a little longer, you will not taste the skin anyway. However, the following two points are more critical:
- Make sure you do not squash the tomatoes while cutting it (use a sharp knife) because the flavor is in the juice. Preserve the juice as much as you can.
- Remove the stems of the tomatoes. It doesn’t taste good in the soft egg and tomato stir fry.
Besides that, you also need a few stalks of scallion. Separate the green and the white section and slice both sections into thin rings. The white section is used as aromatic, while the green part is for garnishing the dish.
The cooking process
- Heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in the wok. Wok is traditionally used in Chinese cooking, but it is equally appropriate with a non-stick pan for the egg and tomato stir-fry since you don’t need a roaring heat to cook. Besides, it is healthier because less oil is required.
- Saute the white section of the scallion until it turns automatic. Add the diced tomato over medium heat, and season with some salt and sugar. You can have a choice to cut the tomatoes slightly bigger or mash it while stir-frying it to get a smoother texture. You can also add a few tbsp of water, cover it, and cook for a few minutes to get a paste-like texture. These are the variations that depend on your preference.
- I like to add a small amount of ketchup. It enhances the tomato flavor and provides a deep red color, which does not transpire if you are using fresh tomato alone.
- When the water starts to dry up, add some cornstarch slurry to thicken it.
- The cornstarch slurry is made by mixing a teaspoon of cornstarch with two tablespoons of water. It helps to hold up the tomato juice, forming a thick gravy-like texture and preventing it from separating from the tomatoes. It also helps to create a smooth texture.
- Remember to carry out a taste test before removing the tomatoes from the pan. You may need to adjust to sweetness to counterbalance the sourness of the tomato. The amount of sugar can be different each time, depending on the quality of the tomatoes you use.
Some other ingredients
You can add some chicken stock or some stock powder instead of just water to enhance the flavor, but I want to keep this recipe simple as it is a little overkill.
2. Stir-fry the eggs
Crack five eggs into a bowl and season with some salt and ground white pepper. Heat some cooking oil in a clean pan, then pour the egg mixture into the pan and stir it continuously with a pair of chopsticks.
I want the egg to have a silky smooth texture, which can be achieved by continue stirring it over medium heat until it starts to curdle once it looks like a scrambled egg, remove from heat immediately.
3. Combine the egg and the tomatoes
Return the tomatoes to the pan and quickly combine it with the scrambled eggs by stirring gently with a spatula.
Remove from heat immediately to avoid overcooking. The egg should have a silky smooth texture by now.
Sprinkle the green section of the scallion rings on top of the eggs and tomato stir-fry. Serve the tomato eggs over a bed of steamed rice.
Other related recipes
Do check out the following recipes if you like eggs. These are the traditional ways Asian cook eggs at home.
Steamed eggs: Egg combines with water and steam until it is just cooked, and is still jiggling!
Egg Foo Young: Deep-fried egg Chinese style. Take note that the original version does not serve with sauce.
Egg drop soup: A quick and easy soup with silky smooth egg drop floating around.
The Chinese tomato eggs recipe
For the tomatoes (A)
- 2 tomatoes (8 oz or 250g)
- 1/4 tsp of salt
- 1 tbsp of ketchup
- 2 tsp of sugar
- 2 tbsp scallion (white sections, thin rings)
- 2 tbsp water
For the eggs (B)
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 tsp of salt
- 1/4 tsp of ground white pepper
- 1 tsp of cornstarch mix with 2 tbsp of water (cornstarch slurry)
- 2 tbsp of scallion (green section, thin rings)
- 2 tbsp of cooking oil
- Cut the scallion into thin rings and separate the green and white sections.
- Cut the tomatoes into small dices.
- Saute the white section scallion in oil. Then add the remaining ingredients in A, Cook for 2 minutes. Add the cornstarch slurry. Remove.
- Mix the ingredient in B. Pour into a pan with some oil over medium heat. Stir until it becomes half-cooked scrambled eggs.
- Return the tomatoes to the pan. Add some green scallion, Have a quick mix and dish out. Garnish with more green scallion.
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EXTRA LARGE Organic Bamboo Cutting Board with Juice Groove - Best Kitchen Chopping Board for Meat (Butcher Block) Cheese and Vegetables | Anti Microbial Heavy Duty Serving Tray w/Handles - 18 x 12
Joyce Chen 21-9972, Classic Series Carbon Steel Wok Set, 4-Piece, 14-Inch Charcoal
Heinz Tomato Ketchup, 64 oz Value Size Bottle
GreenLife CW002044-002 Healthy Nonstick Dishwasher Oven Safe Sta Soft Grip Diamond Reinforced 8" Ceramic Non-Stick Open Frypan, 8-Inch, Black
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 324Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 372mgSodium: 809mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 2gSugar: 10gProtein: 14g
This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix on 8/25/2020