Whether you call them aji tamago, ramen eggs, or soy eggs, there’s no denying that these marinated eggs are delicious! They are egg-cellent on their own as a snack, and perfect as a topping for grain bowls, soups, noodle dishes, and stews. These eggs top our award winning ramen, and they are easy to recreate at home. I usually make a double batch because they are such an addictive snack.
Timing Is Everything
Ramen eggs are famous for their jammy yolks. I’ve taken the guesswork out of achieving that perfect barely set yolk by experimenting with the cooking times. So if you want the kind of runny yolk that traditionally comes with ramen eggs, boil them for precisely 6 1/2 minutes. Likewise, if you prefer them more set, use these experiments as a guideline to get the exact yolk you want.
EGGS…More Food For Thought
One of the most important things when making ramen eggs is to handle the eggs carefully. Carefully check your eggs for any cracks before starting, carefully lower them into the simmering water, carefully transfer them into the ice bath when the cooking time is over, and carefully peel them without rushing.
Another key point is to make sure to swirl the eggs gently in the simmering water while they cook. The reason for this is to center the yolks so that that you have a nice bright yellow yolk right in the middle when you cut through it.
At the restaurant, we can’t afford not to have perfect looking eggs and we need each one to come out so we don’t waste any. To ensure this, we have a rotation system so that we always have cases of eggs that have been “aging” in the fridge. Why you ask? Because really fresh eggs are IMPOSSIBLE to peel. Once you peel them, they will look like they’ve been through egg hell, all pitted and missing delicate pieces of white. It’s ugly. So if you have the option, try using older eggs when you’re making anything having to do with boiled eggs and you will notice a remarkable difference.
Furthermore, having an ice bath ready is just as important as setting a timer. That’s because the eggs will continue to cook until the ice water chills them, and just a few seconds can mean the difference between your desired yolk and sadness.
Peeling The Eggs
At our ramen restaurant, we can go through hundreds of eggs a day! That is a lot of peeling, and I have spent countless hours helping to crack and remove eggshells. So we use a couple of tricks to reduce frustration. The first is to add vinegar to the water, which softens the shells and makes for easier peeling. Next, we always work with our special tool-a thin light spoon. We use this spoon to tap all around the shell, which cracks it without damaging the egg. Then we slip the tip of the spoon under the shell and help pry off the shells. Finally, submerging the egg in cold water while peeling it also helps the shell to fall off cleanly. Since these eggs are not set in the middle, it’s very easy to squish them if you’re handling them roughly.
Marinate for the best ramen eggs!
What sets ramen eggs apart from other soft boiled eggs is the incredible tangy marinade they soak in. This doesn’t only add cool contrasting color to the eggs, but the blast of umami flavor mixed with the yolk is indescribably delicious. And the marinade couldn’t be easier. Just mix mirin, soy sauce and water!
Traditional ramen egg marinades do not have any heavy spices or flavors. This is because the egg is a complementary component that shouldn’t compete with the ramen flavors. Marinate the eggs overnight for the best flavor.
I always make extra ramen eggs because while I usually have a specific dish in mind to add them to, they have a mysterious habit of disappearing from the fridge before I get a chance. They are an amazing topping for Pho, Ginger Tofu Bowls, or Lemongrass Chicken Noodle Bowls just to name a few!
I can’t wait to see all the ways you come up with to enjoy these easy ramen eggs! Leave a comment below, rate the recipe, and of course tag us in your #yolkporn insta pics @funkyasiankitchen.
- 4 large eggs
- ¼ cup mirin
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- full cup water
- optional: ½ cup white vinegar for boiling the eggs
For The Marinade:
- Combine the mirin, soy sauce, and water together and set aside.
Cook The Eggs:
- Fill a small 4 quart saucepan halfway with water. Bring to a simmer and add the white vinegar if using. Gently lower eggs into the pot, either with a slotted spoon or wire spider (try and do this in the fewest steps), which will cause the least amount of trauma to the eggs.
- Set a timer and cook the eggs for 6 ½ minutes for a very liquid yolk, or 7 ½ minutes for a soft yolk.
- Gently swirl the eggs with a spoon or chopsticks occasionally to center the egg yolk as it cooks.
- In the meantime, get an ice bath ready for your cooked eggs. As soon as the timer rings, take the eggs out of the simmering water and transfer to the ice bath. Chill the eggs for a couple of minutes until completely cool.
Peel And Marinate:
- Peel the eggs gently as the center is very loose and cannot handle rough handling. We use a light thin spoon to gently crack the eggs and then use the spoon to carefully pry the shell off, sliding the spoon under the membrane of the egg. Using a bowl of water and submerging the egg while peeling is often helpful.
- Put the eggs in the smallest container that will fit them and pour the marinade over the eggs. You can also use a zip top bag, pressing out all of the air before sealing the bag.
- In order to keep the eggs submerged in the container, you can use a weight, like a small plate. Or take a piece of rinsed cheesecloth or even a paper towel and push down gently on the eggs so everything is soaked in the marinade.
- Marinate the eggs overnight or at least 6 hours.
- Use the eggs to top ramen, as a side dish, or a quick snack.
*For the most accurate cooking times use large eggs.
*Vinegar softens the egg shells making the eggs easier to peel.
*Older eggs are much easier to peel than fresh eggs. Choose older eggs if you have a choice.
*If you are not using the marinated eggs right away, you should take them out of the marinade and store it covered until ready to use. (The eggs will continue to absorb the salt in the marinade, turning the egg salty and firm). Marinated eggs will stay fresh for a couple of days.