Japanese

Miso-Cured Eggs

March 23, 2021
5 Stars
Photo by Hannah Kirshner
  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Cook time 72 hours
  • Serves 6 as a snack or side dish
Author Notes

This recipe comes from Dankura, a soba restaurant in Yamanaka. Straight miso is a more typical pickling medium for boiled eggs; cutting it with saké kasu makes the result less salty, more nuanced. I like to use a reddish-golden-brown awase miso (that means it’s made with soybean koji and rice koji) or inaka (country) miso—something with lots of umami and complexity, but not dark and overpowering. If your supermarket has only red and white miso, you can mix them—or just use whatever you have on hand.

Adapted from Water, Wood & Wild Things: Learning Craft and Cultivation in a Japanese Mountain Town. —Hannah Kirshner

Ingredients
  • 7 large eggs
  • 70 grams (1/4 cup) saké kasu paste
  • 75 grams (1/4 cup) miso
  • Scallions, thinly sliced on a diagonal, for serving
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Fill a medium saucepan with enough water to cover the eggs (but don’t put them in yet), and bring to a boil. Using a spoon, lower the eggs one at a time into the boiling water. Adjust the heat as needed to keep the eggs at a simmer, not a full boil (you want to consistently see little bubbles, but not big ones), for 8 minutes. Immediately pour off the hot water and fill the pan with cold water two or three times, until it stays cool.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the saké kasu and miso to make a uniform paste.
  3. As soon as the eggs are cool enough to touch, crack each one all over and carefully peel it under cool water. Select the 6 nicest-looking eggs; the remaining one is a cook’s snack. (If you managed to peel them all perfectly, congratulations!)
  4. Tear off a piece of plastic wrap large enough to wrap one egg. In the center, spread a generous tablespoon of the kasu-miso mixture into a thin layer, so you can cover the whole outside of the egg. Place the egg in the middle of the paste, fold the plastic around the egg lengthwise, squishing around the paste so it completely enrobes the egg. Twist the ends of the plastic closed and set aside. Repeat with the remaining 5 eggs.
  5. Cure eggs in the refrigerator for 3 days (wrapped in paste and plastic, the eggs will keep for a long time, but the flavor is best within 3–5 days). Before serving, gently wipe off the paste as best you can (I do this with the plastic wrap or my fingers), saving the paste for another use (such as soup or marinade). Slice the eggs into quarters, and scatter a few slivers of sliced scallion on each piece.

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Hannah Kirshner is author of Water, Wood, and Wild Things.  She is a writer, artist, and food stylist whose work has appeared in The New York Times, Vogue, Saveur, Taste, Food52, Roads & Kingdoms, and Atlas Obscura, among others. Trained at the Rhode Island School of Design, Kirshner grew up on a small farm outside Seattle and divides her time between Brooklyn and rural Japan.

4 Reviews

Rosemary July 7, 2021
I totally agree with Ala. I also read the recipe with interest until I saw to wrap each egg with plastic. We really need to stop normalising such wanton waste and pollution.
 
Dana G. October 24, 2021
Lol. A piece or 4 of plastic wrap is not that big of a deal. GTFOH.
 
Adla April 16, 2021
Plastic wrap each egg?! Seriously? I never comment if I haven’t tried a recipe, but my excitement just drained reading that. You could likely do this in a small bowl with satisfactory results. Please don’t create recipes with unnecessary plastic waste.
 
Hannah K. June 14, 2021
I hear you. I wanted to be true to the originator of the recipe—the chef in a small soba restaurant in Ishikawa who taught me—and that's how she does it. I appreciated the efficiency and tidiness of her method (and it makes it easy to use one or two eggs and continue to store the rest), but I also try to avoid using plastic wrap unnecessarily. Instead, you can pack the eggs together in a container slathered in the paste, but then you need to make more of the paste to cover them completely so they don't dry out—and you need to use up that paste for miso soup or marinade so as not to be wasteful! If you find a good method that doesn't use plastic wrap, would you share it here? I'm sure many of us share your concern.