I. Love. Eggs.

by Amy Kim on February 23, 2011 · 25 comments

I don’t remember ever liking this dish as a kid. Perhaps it was my aversion to egg yolks at the time. And restaurant versions never appealed to me. It was always given as “service” (free) and always lacked flavor. But my mom made it for us during a recent visit and it was not the “yucky yolky” dish I remembered. I slid a small spoonful of the light custard on my plate and before I knew it, I pretty much ate half of the bowl.

I love the simplicity of this recipe.  The tofu gives it a meaty texture and the salted shrimp is enough to season the dish without overwhelming it. Best of all, my picky little toddler LOVES it.

Watch me make this dish in my debut video! Enjoy!


Gaeran Jjim (Korean-style steamed egg casserole)

Serves 3 OR 1 very hungry toddler and adult

2-3 eggs, beaten
1/8 cup water
7 oz. tofu (or half a block of the typical store-bought tofu), mashed
1 tablespoon saewoo jjut or salted shrimp, chopped (you can substitute about 1 teaspoon of salt if you don’t have the salted shrimp)
2 stalks green onions, sliced thinly
A pinch of black pepper

1 – Beat eggs and water together in a small heat-proof bowl. Add tofu by squeezing and mashing it through your fingers.

2 – Add the salted shrimp, green onions, and black pepper. Mix.

3 – Fill a large pot with about 1-inch of water. The covered pot should be large enough to hold the small bowl. I used my cast iron Dutch oven and while you can rest the bowl on the bottom of the pot, I placed the bowl on a steamer basket.

4 – Cover pot and bring the water to a boil and lower heat to medium and cook for about 20 minutes.

5 – Serve hot and enjoy!

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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

1 brhau February 23, 2011 at 4:29 AM

This is also one of my favorites, though I make it without the tofu. I like being able to get that flan-like texture, but it doesn’t work every time. My aunt used to massacre it, turned out like rubber.


2 AMY February 23, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Yeah, I remember a lot of food being overcooked.

Have you seen other recipes that included tofu?


3 brhau February 23, 2011 at 1:38 PM

I haven’t. Not that I’ve been looking, though. This also kind of reminds me of Vietnamese pork cake—ground pork instead of tofu.


4 b.lo February 23, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Hey Amy,

Where’s the best place to get salted shrimp in SF area? I’m hoping my non-eating 4yo will like this.



5 AMY February 23, 2011 at 8:08 PM

Hey Bret! Thanks for stopping by! You can find salted shrimp at a couple of places in SF. There’s First Korean Market on Geary between 10th and 11th – a small mom-and-pop store stocked with all the essential Korean foodstuff as well as some pretty good prepared foods. You must try their fried chicken if you go there. Then there’s a larger Korean supermarket in Daly City called Kukje. Hope you are well!


6 Mariko February 24, 2011 at 2:26 AM

This looks so much like Chawan Mushi (something I always avoided as a child). I wonder if I would like it now…?


7 angi February 24, 2011 at 9:39 PM

Nooo don’t hate chawan mushi!! One of my favorite dishes my grandma used to make is a steamed egg custard dish – very similar to this and chawan mushi! Does every Asian culture have a steamed egg dish??


8 AMY February 24, 2011 at 10:27 PM

I think so! I need to try this chawan mushi (i think momofuku has a recipe) and the vietnamese pork cake brhau mentioned.


9 AMY February 24, 2011 at 10:16 PM

I’ve never had chawan mushi, but it sounds very similar!


10 Chihana February 24, 2011 at 3:04 AM

Amy, Is salted shrimp that dried tiny, tiny, baby shrimp stuff in a big clear bag? I am going to look for it at Uwajimaya. This looks really yummy.


11 AMY February 24, 2011 at 10:22 PM

The salted shrimp for this recipe is not dried. I have a picture of the jar in my kimchi post.


12 mamaloli March 4, 2011 at 10:50 PM

This is one of my favorite dishes :)


13 Joanne March 10, 2011 at 8:59 AM

OMG!!!!!!!! Your blog makes me SO HAPPY! My mom used to make this for me all the time growing up. You are making me soooooo nostalgic right now!! I’m so excited you are posting Korean recipes!


14 AMY March 10, 2011 at 1:54 PM

I know every time I make it, it takes me back! In fact, I just made this today for lunch! Thanks for visiting!


15 Sue March 18, 2011 at 1:57 AM

I’m super excited to make this!!! more tofu dishes please!!!


16 AMY March 18, 2011 at 9:23 PM

Sue – this dish is soooo easy. i will definitely post more tofu dishes!


17 Randy March 18, 2011 at 8:24 AM


I had some problems with my audio but it looks like you’re using firm tofu. Does the type of tofu matter? Also, your rice in the photo above the video looks really delicious too.


18 AMY March 18, 2011 at 9:44 PM

HI Randy! I need to work on the audio in general! Anyway, the type of tofu does not matter, but it will give you slightly different textures. I’ve used both extra firm and firm tofu for this dish. I have yet to try silken.


19 Jean March 18, 2011 at 1:17 PM

Hi Amy,
Just finished watching the video, loved it! Will have to try this sometime. I know very little about Korean cooking but I think I can give this a go. Will have to add the salted shrimp to my list of Asian pantry items. :-)

Have a great weekend!


20 AMY March 18, 2011 at 9:46 PM

Thanks for watching! Salted shrimp is pretty potent with a very distinct flavor. I’ve heard that some people substitute the shrimp with fish sauce if the shrimp isn’t available. I have not tried this dish with fish sauce…yet!


21 cindy March 28, 2011 at 3:18 PM

this is one of my favorite dishes…it reminds me of childhood. i have never made it with tofu before. i use fish sauce as a subsitute in most of my korean recipes that call for salted shrimp…it makes my korean mother cringe a little (i used a vietnamese brand…for shame!)


22 AMY March 29, 2011 at 1:25 AM

I’ve never tried using fish sauce as a substitute, but should give it a try!


23 MJ June 9, 2011 at 11:09 AM

Looking good Amy – like the kitchen!
I’m gonna try this recipe tonight. How about a nice pajun or buchujun recipe next?


24 AMY June 10, 2011 at 3:08 PM

Hey MJ! Thanks for visiting! I hear your new kitchen is amazing! :-)

Ooohh a recipe request! I am actually growing my own buchu so maybe in a month or so!


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