Vegan Tamagoyaki (Japanese Rolled Omelette)

Could we possibly make a vegan version of Tamagoyaki (玉子焼き), the famous Japanese Rolled Omelette? Turns out, chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour and whipped chickpea brine (aquafaba) come together to make a great approximation.


On the Road Less Traveled

In the process of creating this recipe, I felt hopeful yet oddly saddened. While I truly believe that most meat/dairy/egg containing foods can be replicated with plant-based ingredients, I think it’s also important to acknowledge that there are certain dishes that we cannot replicate perfectly.

Tamagoyaki (玉子焼き), or Japanese Rolled Omelettes, is a prime example. Having grown up as an avid consumer of Japanese food like tamagoyaki, I know perfectly how silky and delicate a proper tamagoyaki should be. Knowing that omelettes made with chickpea flour can get especially dense, I used a combination of aquafaba (whipped chickpea brine) and baking powder to help lighten up the omelette and give it that “bubbly” effect.


How It Tastes

I’ve tested this “egg” batter on a regular half-folded omelette, and I absolutely loved it! It is slightly crispy on the outside and light, fluffy on the inside — I would eat it as a regular omelette every day. However, once the omelette is rolled up, I found that it made the relative firmness of the cooked chickpea “egg” stand out more, making me love it a little bit less.

In terms of the taste alone, this vegan version tastes just like the dashi-infused, subtly sweet yet savory tamagoyaki that we all know and love. And don’t worry, you cannot taste the flavor of the chickpea flour or the chickpea brine at all.


Vegan Tamagoyaki (Japanese Rolled Omelette)

5 from 2 votes
Recipe by George L. Course: SnackCuisine: JapaneseDifficulty: Hard
Servings

1

servings
Prep time

5

minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes

Vegan version of Tamagoyaki, Japanese Rolled Omelette, made with chickpea flour and aquafaba (whipped chickpea brine).

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup kombu dashi broth

  • 1/4 cup water

  • 1/2 cup chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour, I used Bob’s Red Mill

  • 1 teaspoon sugar (or more if you prefer a sweeter rolled omelette)

  • 1 teaspoon mirin

  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric

  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 4 tablespoons chickpea brine (aquafaba)

  • 1 sheet nori

Directions

  • Prepare the Chickpea Egg Batter. Start by slowly adding water to the chickpea flour while whisking (to avoid lumps). Then, add all the remaining ingredients in the ingredients list except for the chickpea brine (Aquafaba) and nori.
  • Finish the Batter. Using an electric mixer (or by hand), whip the chickpea brine (Aquafaba) until soft peaks form. Once it’s whipped, add it to the chickpea egg batter and fold the two together (gently, so you keep most of the air bubbles you just whipped up).
  • Split the chickpea egg batter into approximately three portions, and split the sheet of nori into three rectangular portions as well. In a small non-stick pan coated with vegetable oil (heated on medium-high heat), pour 1/3 of the batter in and spread it to a thin layer. As the egg batter begins to set (it should begin to set very fast), Add a sheet of nori in the middle and carefully roll up the omelette from one side to the other (I like to use a flipper and a pair of chopsticks to help me roll). Make sure the bottom of the egg has completely set by unsticking the sides and checking. Keep the omelette at that side, and oil the pan again, followed by another 1/3 of the chickpea egg batter. Repeat this process until you’ve used up all of the batter and all 3 of the nori pieces. Be careful not to cook the omelette for too long as it will stiffen up even more.
  • Shape the omelette. To achieve better shape with the rolled omelette, mould it with a Japanese bamboo mat (makisu). While the omelette is still hot, roll it up inside the bamboo mat and tie the whole thing up with a rubber band. Wait for around 5 minutes until you unwrap the bamboo mat and slice the omelette into 6 pieces (trimming off the sides). Enjoy warm.

Notes

Did you make this recipe? I’d love to see your recreations!

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