Which is a two part dish, consisting of an Asian style omelette in a mildly ginger laced vegetable stock sauce. It’s surprisingly addictive! I used duck eggs for this one, just because we have them, but chook eggs work just as well.
We are just a few days away now from the Spring equinox, one of the two points in the year when the days and the nights are equal length. Once upon a time in ancient Europe people used to gather to celebrate the spring equinox. The hibernating animals emerged from their winter burrows to breed, along with a certain mythical rabbit. The flush of spring laying provided eggs in such abundance they could be blown and painted just for the fun and beauty of it. People marked the balance point between the lengthening days and the shortening nights, and celebrated the eternal cycle of winter death and spring resurrection.
We have “enough” eggs year round – just a few weeks when the chooks are moulting when they are actually scarce, which ironically is around the autumn equinox in the southern hemisphere. But in spring even the geriatrics lay for a while and we have so many eggs that it is very easy to see how painted eggs became a spring equinox tradition. Our son visited on the weekend and we fed him and his friends eggs for breakfast and sent him home with a dozen duck eggs. My partner has the kind of liver that doesn’t produce cholesterol, so he’s eating a couple of poached eggs for breakfast every day. And any respectable Tuesday Night Vego Challenge has to include eggs.
Get everything chopped and ready before you start, because it goes together fast.
- Beat 3 duck eggs or 4 large chook eggs with an eggbeater or fork until they are frothy.
- Add a teaspoon of grated ginger, a pinch of salt, and a dessertspoon of wine vinegar, saké or sherry.
- Cook in an oiled frypan over a low heat, lid on, till set. Loosen the edges and turn the omelette over for just a minute, then tip it out onto a board.
- Slice into strips, ready to add to the sauce.
- Grate another teaspoon of ginger.
- Julienne an onion (chop it in half, then finely lengthways) and a carrot.
- Dice another couple of cupfuls of vegetables – celery, snow peas, peas, mushrooms, kale, silver beet, broccolini, asparagus, chinese cabbage – you want those kind of Asian stir-fry vegetables, but there are lots of choices possible.
- Mix 1½ cups of stock with 2 dessertspoons of soy sauce, a teaspoon of honey and another dessertspoon of vinegar, saké or sherry.
- Mix 3 teaspoons of cornflour (cornstarch in USA) in a little water.
When they are all ready, heat up a wok or a large pan with a little oil till it is hot. Add the onions first, stir for a minute, add the carrots, stir for another minute, then add the ginger and the other vegetables and stir fry for two or three minutes.
Then add the stock and braise the vegetables in it for just a couple of minutes. You want the vegetables to be tender but still have some crunch to them.
Add the cornflour and stir through. The sauce should thicken immediately.
Take it off the heat, add the strips of omelette, and gently ladle into bowls. Serve with extra soy sauce on the side for salt lovers.