Stir-fried shrimp and eggs (虾仁炒蛋) is a common Cantonese dish that we’re always sure to order when we go to Chinatown back in New York. There’s just something about those silky scrambled eggs, scallions, and tender shrimp that makes it a must-order.
There is a great little Cantonese restaurant located at 11 Division Street in New York Chinatown that makes it really well: 富临海鲜酒家 – Fuleen Seafood Restaurant. It’s not a fancy place, but if you want an inexpensive and tasty lunch, this is the place for you. Order a few dishes and eat like a king for less than $30.
I dug out an old photo of the place from my phone archives to share with y’all. The waiters are classic Chinatown, the place is frequented by both locals and newcomers, we’ve had countless family gatherings there on both Judy’s and my side of the family, and it gets a unanimous vote of confidence from all four of us.
Their Lunch Special is probably the best deal in the city. They offer a large collection of classic dishes for less than 6 bucks a dish, as long as you get there before 3:00 PM. Judy’s parents, always the thrifty spenders with no less than a hearty appreciation for food, are regulars. Without a doubt, this is our Chinatown lunch destination and a must-do every time we find ourselves in Chinatown. Judy is sitting next to me ranting about how great this place is. She may be drooling as I write this post. For the record, when you go there, here are some of our favorite dishes:Shrimp Egg Stir-fry (虾仁炒蛋) – recipe here today! Salt and Pepper Pork Chops (椒盐排骨) – the girls’ childhood favorite CANTONESE SALT AND PEPPER PORK CHOPS Braised Hongshao Tofu (红烧豆腐) – Already on the blog: QUICK AND EASY BRAISED TOFU Steamed Pork with Salted Fish (咸鱼蒸肉饼) – We’ll wait until next winter to show you this one. Beef & Bitter Melon Stir Fry (苦瓜牛肉) – updated and now on the blog – BEEF AND BITTER MELON STIR-FRY Water Spinach with Fermented Bean Curd (腐乳空心菜) – Already on the blog, WATER SPINACH WITH GARLIC, GINGER, AND FERMENTED TOFU Steamed Ginger Scallion Carp – a recipe cooked in the same style on the blog already is: CANTONESE STEAMED FISH
We order all of this with a small neat bowl of white rice for everyone at the table. If you’re ever in Manhattan Chinatown, give the place a try and let us know what you think!
But back to this Shrimp and Egg Stir-fry–it’s a great meal on its own served with steamed rice and maybe this garlicky bok choy. The key to the eggs’ silky, velvety texture is quite a bit of oil–a quarter cup to be exact. But just think of it as 1/2 a tablespoon per egg–divided among a family of 4? Not so bad. The oil and the eggs kind of absorb together–a necessary step for the dish. Here’s how to make it:
- 12 oz. shrimp, shelled and deveined
- 8 large eggs (at room temperature–very important)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper (or to taste)
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1/4 cup of Chinese toon sprouts (xiang chun miao, 香椿芽 – totally optional)
- 1/4 cup canola oil
We added green Chinese toon spouts called xiang chun 香椿, an aromatic that is readily available in China and of course, here in Beijing. There is also a purple Chinese toon variety that looks like purple choy sum and is frequently used in cold dishes, but we chose the green sprouts, which are perfect for this dish. We’d never had this aromatic before seeing it in China, but it really enhances the flavor of this simple stir fried shrimp and eggs dish. It has this unusual peppery, oniony aromatic flavor that is great when added to salads or a dish like this one. Fuleen doesn’t use it, and the dish is perfect without it, so don’t worry about leaving it out.
Clean your shrimp (we buy shrimp from the frozen section of our supermarket back home already deveined and cleaned so all you need to do is defrost them and give them a quick rinse) and take out your fresh eggs early since it is best to cook them at room temperature. Otherwise, the cold eggs will cool off your wok and impede the cooking process.
Beat your eggs in a large bowl and add salt, white pepper, and sesame oil. Chop the scallions and wash your toon sprouts. Set aside about a small handful of chopped scallion and toon sprouts (if using) for the garnish and add the rest into the eggs.
Boil about 3 cups of water and toss in your shrimp just until they turn pink. This will be very very quick. Give them a quick rinse, drain, and add the warm shrimp to your egg mixture.
By now, it looks like you are getting ready to cook a large shrimp omelet. Heat the wok on high until nearly smoking and then add your 1/4 cup of oil. Yes, a quarter cup folks. If your worried about the amount of oil, you can dial it back but hey, you see how much oil you put in your salad dressing right? I rest my case.
Once you add the oil and the wok is well coated (swirl it all around), pour in your egg mixture and quickly use a wooden spoon or spatula and fold the eggs gently but quickly, like you are making scrambled eggs. You don’t want any browned eggs in this dish, just fluffy clouds of egg with your shrimp dispersed throughout.
Once the eggs look done (be careful not to overcook them), transfer your stir fried shrimp and eggs to a plate, garnish with the scallions/sprouts you reserved earlier, and serve with steamed rice.
Stir-fried Shrimp and Eggs
- Clean your shrimp and take your eggs out of the refrigerator early since it is best to cook them at room temperature. Beat your eggs in a large bowl and add salt, white pepper, and sesame oil. Chop the scallions and wash your toon sprouts, if using. Set aside a bit of chopped scallion and toon sprouts for the garnish and add the rest to the egg mixture.
- Boil about 3 cups of water and toss in your shrimp until they just turn pink. This will be very fast. Drain and give them a quick rinse. Add the warm shrimp to your egg mixture.
- Next, heat the wok on high until nearly smoking and add 1/4 cup canola oil. Swirl the oil around the wok thoroughly and pour in your egg mixture. Use a wooden spoon or spatula and fold the eggs gently but quickly, kind of like you're making scrambled eggs. You don't want any browned eggs in this dish, just fluffy clouds of egg with your shrimp dispersed throughout.
- Once the eggs look done (be careful not to overcook them), transfer to a plate, garnish with scallion/sprouts, and serve with steamed rice.