Omurice is one of the most popular Japanese home-cooked dishes. A simple fried rice known as “chicken rice” is covered in a soft-set omelette and demi-glace sauce. There are three main styles of preparing the omelette for the omurice, and I’m going to show you the most popular style.
2 tbsp canola oil
1 small onion peeled and finely diced
½ cup sliced mushrooms
1 small carrot, finely diced (optional)
1 small chicken breast, cut into 2cm cubes
¼ cup frozen peas
salt, to season
4 cups cooked koshihikari rice, chilled overnight
1 tsp soy sauce
1-2 tbsp tomato sauce (ketchup)
5 eggs, beaten
¼ cup demiglace (available from Japanese grocers)
2 tbsp beef or other stock
1 tsp finely chopped parsley, to serve
Heat a frying pan over medium heat and add 1 tbsp of oil. Fry the onions for about a minute until fragrant, then add the mushrooms and carrot and fry for a further 2 minutes until the carrots are softened. Add the chicken and peas, season with salt and fry until the chicken is just cooked through.
Add the rice to the frying pan, along with the soy sauce and ketchup. Fry for about 3 minutes until the rice is warmed, softened and well mixed. Remove the rice from the pan and divide it between two bowls. Press the rice to the side of the bowl at a 45 degree angle, so that he rice forms a half-football or “torpedo” shape rather than a round dome. Turn the rice out onto two separate plates and keep warm while you cook the eggs.
For the demi-glace sauce, combine the prepared demi-glace and stock in a small saucepan and mix well over medium heat until hot and combined.
Heat a clean frying pan (around the same size as the plate the rice is on) over medium heat and add about 1 tbsp of oil. Add 2-3 beaten eggs and with a gentle pushing motion, push the egg from the edges of the pan to the centre as the egg slowly cooks. When the egg is set at the base but still quite wet on top, remove the pan from the heat and slide the egg over one plate the rice. Pour over the demi-glace sauce and sprinkle with a little parsley to serve. Repeat for the remaining egg.
Top Tips for Omurice
- There are three main ways of making the egg to go with this dish. Firstly an egg skin is cooked firm and used to wrap the rice. This is a common way of doing this, but the drawback is that the egg is usually fully set rather than soft. Secondly, a soft-centred French omelette is placed on top of the rice and cut so that it opens over the rice. This method is very difficult to achieve unless you are very good at making French-style omelettes. This is how omurice is served in many specialist, higher-end omurice restaurants. The third and most popular method is the one in this recipe, where a soft, unfolded omelette is draped over the rice on the plate. This is the most common way the dish is served at home in Japan.
- Without the egg, this dish is called “chicken rice” and is a very popular kids dish in Japan. Of course, omurice with the egg is popular too.
- You can leave off the demiglace if you prefer and just top the rice with a squirt of tomato sauce (ketchup).