Sunday, July 23, 2006

Working Eater Series: Taiwanese Oyster Omelet

Eggs are one of the easiest and quickest working eater foods out in the market today. There are no preservatives, no microwaves, and no can openers to deal with. Plus, kids generally like eggs too! You can't go wrong with them.

With that in mind, I want to share a newly-discovered working eater recipe for Taiwanese oyster omelets! (I learned how to make this for my beau, who loves oysters and Taiwanese food.) I was inspired to write up a recipe for this dish for the working eater series because of Elmo Monster's post on a Taiwanese restaurant that served this seafood omelet. It literally takes minutes to make, thus making for a wonderful main dish for a working eater.

Taiwanese Oyster Omelet
10 oz jar of refrigerated shucked oysters, drained and roughly chopped
1/4 cup powdered sweet potato starch
1/2 cup water
2 tbsp sweet chili sauce (can substitute 1 tbsp of sriracha thoroughly mixed with 1 tbsp of ketchup)
3 large eggs, scrambled
2 tbsp of vegetable oil (divided)
1 cup of cooked chrysanthemum greens, stir-fried with 2 cloves of chopped garlic (can substitute mustard greens or spinach for the chrysanthemum greens)

Combine the sweet potato starch, water, and oysters until thoroughly blended. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a wok or large skillet until shimmering, and pour the starch batter in the skillet and allow it to cook and set until it begins to turn translucent. Flip the sweet potato starch pancake until it becomes translucent throughout. (You may have to break the sticky pancake up into more manageable patches, and individually flip each patch.) The pancake should have a gluey texture, almost like mochi. Now, take the cooked pancake off the heat, and reserve.

Using the same pan (first, make sure that the surface is clean and unblemished with leftover potato starch bits), add the remaining tbsp of oil, and heat until shimmering. Swirl the scrambled egg mixture into the heated pan. Being careful not to break the egg omelet, heat it until it is set, and carefully flip it, using a wide-brimmed spatula if necessary.

There are two ways to serve the omelet. You can either spread the bed of greens and cooked potato starch mixture on one-half of the omelet (while it is still in the pan) and flip it onto a plate, or put the greens and potato starch mixture directly on the plate, and put the full, circular omelet on top. Either way, spread the hot sauce on the surface of the scrambled omelet, and enjoy!

The fluffy egg omelet is a perfect companion to the crunchy and wilted wisps of chrysanthemum greens, the sweet pungency of the fiery pepper sauce, the sticky potato starch pancake, and the tender and chewy morsels of oyster.


  1. I do love omelets but oysters? Hmmm...I'm not that adventurous. I've only tasted them once and wasn't completely enthralled!

  2. Woo hoo! You posted the recipe! You make sound so simple. I'm going to print this and make a trip out to the market.

    Thanks PE!

  3. Oysters definitely require an acquired taste Rachel. My beau brought his brother and his sister-in-law to Hog Island Oyster Company in Point Reyes to sample the raw oysters there, and they looked like they didn't enjoy them too much. I agree though, that oysters have a strong "fishy-seafood" taste in them.

    You can modify the recipe too Elmo Monster. For instance, you might want to add less oysters and more sweet potato starch batter, but these are the proportions that my beau likes. (He likes them oysters!) Just make sure that you add one part sweet potato starch to two parts water. It seems too liquidy when you mix it, but once it begins to cook, the batter will solidify. You can get the sweet potato starch, chrysanthemum greens, and sweet chili sauce at 99 Ranch Market or any other Chinese market. (Sorry for stating the obvious.) If you can't get the sweet chili sauce, then a substitute sauce of sriracha, ketchup, and brown sugar to taste should suffice. Also, I like spinach better than chrysanthemum greens, because chrysanthemum greens have a bit of bitter, stinging aftertaste.

  4. Very cool, i love this dish. I'm going to Hong Kong and Taiwan this Christmas, and you can bet i'll be feeding off these and delicious stinky tofu! Hope all is well PE.

  5. You are quite the traveler Eat, Drink, & Be Merry! Have a great time in Taiwan! I really loved reading your posts on Japan, and I know that I'll love the Taiwan and Hong Kong posts just as much or even more. Are you going to put on pre-Taiwan + pre-Hong Kong trip recipe posts?

  6. i tried these for the first time at a taiwanese resturant and actually found the recipe here. a million THANKS! it's delicious!

  7. PE, that's a good idea. i should probably try my hand at cooking taiwanese/cantonese dishes.

  8. No problem Sparky! Thanks for visiting, and I hope that the recipe is a success for you!

    Can't wait for the recipes Eat, Drink, & Be Merry! I'd love to see a recipe for oo-ah-mi-sua if you ultimately want to try that dish. That is the oysters and somen noodle soup dish that is often eaten with the oyster omelet (oo-ah-jen).

  9. I like both of those dishes (oyster thin noodles and oyster omelet/pancake). A good rule of thumb for eating oysters is to only eat them during the months that have the letter "r" in them since right now they're spawning and will have less flavor.

    I like Hog Island's selection a lot. =)

    If you want to try raw sometime again, I have a suggestion for a mignonette that worked pretty well. It consisted of finely chopped shallots, some rice wine vinegar, and some raspberry wine vinegar. The most popular condiment the last time I went was actually japanese-style (soy sauce + wasabi), but I tend to like things like lemon + rice wine vinegar + sriracha and things like that. =)

  10. P.S. I think the stuff that you and your beau make are really good. I'm actually dying to try this particular recipe out...

  11. Thank you for the great oyster tip Jeff L! I had actually heard that tip about the "R" months before, but I forgot about it entirely. (I guess that means the only bad months for oysters are May, June, July, and August!) The "beau" likes Hog Island too, so we could (and should) make a trip to Point Reyes together! It could be another family reunion, if you were interested! The mignonette sounds divine! I'll have to try it sometime! Also too, please let me know what you think about the oyster omelet recipe. I hope you like it! Take care Jeff L, I hope to see you soon!

  12. love your site! I must try this recipe...looks yummy!

  13. Thank you Dee! I love your ChocoBay site too!

  14. wowww i just made it and it tastes amazing. i wish it were easier to flip though. thanks for the recipe!

  15. Thank you for writing this. I actually stumbled upon your site because I Was looking for a Taiwanese Oyster Omlete. ^.^ I'm so glad I found a recipe that's simple to follow. Thank you!

  16. yea, i love taiwan oyster omelettes! thanks for the recipe omelette omelettes!

  17. sry,but may I rephrase it for my homework purposes?I can't find anything esle on the net that made the recipe sound so delicious!Thx!


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