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Sep 16, 2012 09:57 AM

how do you make the tamagoyaki in jiro dreams of sushi?

i've had the poofy tamagoyaki at sushiyas, but never anything that looked like the tagamoyaki in the movie Jiro Dreams Of Sushi.
of course, the tamagoyaki i make at home is the simple rolled omelet.
what is the pasty thing mixed in with the egg?
does anyone have a recipe?

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  1. "What was the pasty thing mixed with the egg?"
    I made and eaten a lot of Tamagoyaki but never has anything pasty added to the egg batter. I've had it with fish sauce in the batter (not my favorite) and a fish paste is sometimes added in a strip on the first layer of egg just as rolling begins but something "pasty" in the egg is unfamiliar. Was your tamagoyaki sweet? Perhaps they used Mirin paste in it?
    I don't know how much experience you have with preparing this wonderful egg dish but, if I may, please allow me to make a couple of suggestions. You don't a rectangular pan. I make them routinely in a non-stock round skillet. If I'm serving guests I commonly just slice off the ends to make a nice squared off edge. Most important, I believe, is keep the heat low so that the egg doesn't brown. IMO, browning ruins the appearance of the presentation, the texture of the egg and essentially makes it a wasted effort.

    5 Replies
    1. re: todao

      have you seen the movie? there is some kind of a mashed paste the eggs are added to before make the tamagoyaki. the egg is not rolled. it seems to be a thick paste/batter that cooks into a poofy raised egg.
      yes, i have made tamagomaki many times. what i make is the basic rolled omelet that i am sure you also make.
      here is a link to the tamagoyaki nigiri that jiro made in the movie.
      i can't seen to paste the image into here. prolly copyrighted. :-))

      1. re: ritabwh

        Haven't seen the movie.
        That is beautiful. I've never seen that, or anything quite like it, before. Now you have my interest peaked and I've got to find out what that is and how it's made. The image in your link looks almost like Castella. But I have found several images of tamago in similar form, but no clear recipe information. Tamago Urasawa:
        is the closest thing I've found thus far.

        1. re: todao

          very nice. looks more eggy than the jiro version, which i think i prefer.
          now i am hungry for tamago!

          1. re: todao

            i mean, i prefer the egg-ier recipe.

        2. re: todao

          Te "pasty thing" is mountain yam or nagaimo ;)

        3. q: how do you make the tamagoyaki in jiro dreams of sushi?

          a: you go find the guy who makes it and spend ~10 years studying under him learning how to do it.


          2 Replies
            1. re: ritabwh

              Is it possible they beat in a slurry of rice flour ( joshinko) or better potato flour (katakuriko) and mirin or dashi to make a batter that rises because of the egg? Kind of like a Passover sponge cake? (Forgive the mixed metaphor) I watched last night and it looked like that's what they did, beating the slurry for a long time to get out any lumps.

          1. There is an earlier discussion here:

            The pasty thing is a yamaimo (do you like slime?) and there's definitely shrimp (shima ebi) in there. I'm inclined to think that it's a type of dashitamago but that's a personal guess, so apart from egg, there's mirin and possibly shoyu at the very least. As to what else and what proportions, either fly to Seattle (that's where Nakazawa is now working) or head to Tokyo.

            8 Replies
            1. re: wattacetti

              not quite the poofy raised egg, but the yamaimo in the recipe piqued my interest


              1. re: ritabwh

                I guess that's where technique comes in. The Jiro recipe uses a suribachi among other things, but the closest Western dish this cooking technique reminds me of most is tortilla espagnol.

                If you've never had yamaimo before, like I said, like slime?

              2. re: wattacetti

                do i like slime? is the pope german?
                one of my favorites is natto mixed in grated yamaimo over rice.
                btw, i do, live near seattle. heh. i saw that he is working at shiro's. a venerable sushiya institution here. i guess i will have to make the trip to see if the tamagoyaki is on the menu.

                1. re: ritabwh

                  I'll have to try that combo. If you do make the trek to Seattle I hope you report back.

                  1. re: ritabwh

                    some of jiro's disciples do indeed work at shiro's. i live about 4 blocks from shiro's. the tamagoyaki is indeed on the menu. i've had it. it's delicious.

                    any 'hounds heading for shiro's please let me know. i'd be more than happy to join.

                    1. re: chartreauxx

                      is it egg-ie? like an egg custard like chawanmushi but more firm and dense? todao, above said it looked like castella, but i don't think it would be doughy-floury, yes?

                      1. re: ritabwh

                        my best description would be like creme brulee and cheesecake (japanese-style "rare cheesecake) had a textural love child.

                        it is pretty dang tasty. less egg-y than some i've had; very light, but definitely with an almost cake-like bent. it's easily handled with chopsticks or fingers, but not at all dry or floury. definitely an egg creation. i guess it's a bit hard to describe...

                      2. re: chartreauxx

                        Chartreauxx, I live nearby and would join you any 4:45!

                  2. Now I have to go and watch this mesmerizing movie again.

                    1. here are the results of my attempt at jiro tamagoyaki today, from the recipe i posted above.
                      i have several points i would re-do differetlnty the next attempt.
                      yes, i can definitely taste/feel the yamaimo texture. not quite eggy enough for my personal taste.
                      i can't figure out how he can get that beautifully smooth brown castella-like crust.
                      it was fun. i'm going to try it again tomorrow.
                      final grade: C-. :-))

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: ritabwh

                        That's starting to look pretty good.

                        Might I suggest adding additional yolks to boost the "eggy" flavor since it's rumored they use eggs with higher yolk ratios (and episodes of Dotchi no Ryōri Shō would suggest these types of eggs exist).

                        The only thing I can think of for the color is to cook longer but at lower heat.

                        1. re: ritabwh

                          It looks great for a start! Seeing that makes me want to make my own too.

                          Since you mentioned the tamagoyaki not being eggy enough, I would consider using duck eggs in my version, which are known for their large yolks, eggy taste and deep yellow colour.

                          Also, I am surprised the recipe you pointed to actually uses brown sugar. I might substitute that with honey, which is known to help give that beautiful brown crust in the castella cake.

                          Do keep us updated on your future attempts!

                          1. re: ritabwh

                            i forgot to mention that i did not follow the recipe. i only used salt and mirin for the seasonings.
                            based on the picture of the round tamagoyaki in the recipe, i suspect this might be a kopycat-style recipe, which still deserves respect as i have not found any recipes out there for jiro's tamagoyaki.
                            @wattacett, thanks for the extra egg yolk suggestion. the modernist cuisine suggests 3 whole eggs and 1 egg yolk for a richer scrambled egg. i am going to try this ratio today when i try another go at this.
                            @vil, yes the brown sugar startled me too! and i am a bit hesitant on using honey, as i think it may overpower the flavor of the tamago. i will try it with more sugar and mirin. my suspicion is that the professional kitchen stove is superior in maintaining a low, evenly distributed heat than my sears electric coil stove! :-D

                            1. re: ritabwh

                              Ever since you have the idea planted in my head, I have been looking up additional info on this delicacy for doing my own.

                              Here is a link (in Japanese) that has step-by-step pictures on making it. The recipe there does not include yamaimo but the picture of the white mixture in the suribachi after the shrimp is ground seems to closely represent that in the movie, as does the picture of the finished product. I thought the pictures on the technique might be helpful:


                              One thing that keeps me from carrying out the project myself, is that the instructions call for cooking the egg for 30 mins under a low heat, even before flipping it over. That is a long amount of time for a step that probably needs my full attention!

                              1. re: vil

                                vil, thank you so much. i am forwarding the link to my cousin for translation.
                                i have made 3 batches of the tamagoyaki. i massaged the recipe i posted above. my problem is trying to duplicate the smooth castella-like top for the egg. i even bought a new pan to see if it would help. no.
                                yes, it does take at least 30 minutes. for me, on an electric stove, it took45 minutes on setting 2. i checked every 15 minutes.
                                i made the first batch pretty plain with mirin and salt. didn't care for the yamaimo taste. texture was fine, but the yamaimo flavor seemed to overwhelm the egg flavor. i am still thinking on egg, yolk, yamaimo, sugar, dashi, mirin and soy ratios to suit my taste. my main challengge is the produce the smooth brown crust. thanks again!