A while ago, I downloaded a picture of an interesting looking dish which bore the title ‘Salted Duck Egg Yolk Fried Prawns’. There was no recipe, nor even any description, rather, it was just a picture of a dish enjoyed by someone in a restaurant in, I think, Malaysia or Singapore. Now, I have written about Chinese Salted Duck Egg before and I mentioned that you can purchase them in their raw state, or cooked. I do not know what was used in the dish that inspired this experiment, but I only had the latter on hand and so was limited to using that. Anyway, here is what I did…
Here is the egg I used (already peeled from the shell), along with one still in its wrapper. I would prefer to have used the raw variety is the yolk is a lovely bright orange color but those cooked before packaging are, in my mind, not quite as pretty.
To make the coating for my shrimp, I mashed the yolk and then made a thick paste using the white of a regular chicken egg along with a little dash of rice wine.
As for the remaining white from the duck egg, I gave some thought to possible uses but, in the end, I just ate it before continuing. The plain white of a boiled chicken egg is pretty bland really, but not these. The lovely salty tang, along with a faint, lmost marine quality, is absolutely delicious.
The chef who made the dish in the picture I mention, used unpeeled shrimp with the head left on. I only had the headless variety and I almost left them unpeeled as the shell enhances the taste but, in the end, I decided to remove all but the last section of shell and the little ‘flippers’. Many people enjoy the experience of teasing the flesh out of the shell with their lips and tongues, but I always find the messy and finicky operation doesn’t always add to the experience. In any event, I tossed the shrimp in the yolk mix and left it to sit for a little while to marinate.
As I expected, the saltiness of the yolk drew out water from the shrimp and diluted the mix a little. To counter, I stirred in just a little cornstarch and then, on a whim, stirred in some sesame seeds too, in order to add a little textural interest.
Now, I really don’t know why I bothered with this shot, when I simply could have told you I deep-fried the shrimp. The shot doesn’t really add much and even the brief time I spent fumbling with the camera caused the shrimp to fry for just a few seconds longer than I wanted and, though they were nice and succulent, the color was a bit darker than I hoped.
Anyway, the result was very nice but I think I need to try this again. I would like to make the yolk taste more assertive and so I think I would try for a thicker, near ‘batter’ next time. I don’t think the sesame seeds really added much either… possibly some finely chopped scallion in the coating mix might work nicely…