Egg Foo Young

In my book—albeit unpublished—Sunday evenings are appropriate for substantive egg dishes, omelets and their ilk, which are on the whole light, versatile and easily prepared. This old Asian fusion dish—Chinese-Indonesian /British/American, what have you—fits the bill. The name derives from Cantonese for “hibiscus egg”, and in Asia is usually served with a sweet-and-sour sauce, in the western hemisphere more often with a simple brown gravy.

For each serving, beat two large eggs loosely; I (for one) think it’s important that the whites are still visible as a component in the final product and use more oil than you would for an omelet. Pour the eggs onto the hot oil and working quickly with a fork pull the eggs apart as they cook until the mixture is almost firm, then add your ingredients; here I’ve added shrimp, scallions and bean sprouts, but ham is frequently used, as is pork, chicken, cabbage and mushrooms; the only omelet-y ingredient you’ll not find in a foo young is cheese.

After the additions have cooked into the surface of the eggs, flip the ‘cake’ and cook to light browning. Use your favorite brown gravy recipe, making it on the thin side.

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