Chinese Tomato and Eggs Recipe

Looking for something new to do with fresh summer tomatoes besides sauces and salads? Have you ever had Chinese Tomato and Eggs?

In 1997, there was a summer where I spent a summer in China as part of the UCCEC program with Columbia University. It was a couple weeks in Beijing, and then a couple weeks in Kunming. We had classes every day, but we were learning Chinese while in China so the immersion forced us to learn faster and broader, and the weekends included trips such as what you see below to Beihai, Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, and the Great Wall and more.

Beijing Sightseeing:
Temple of Heaven, Beijing Our UCCEC group at  Temple of Heaven, Beijing in summer of 1997
Me in the Forbidden City, China in 1997 The steps at the Great Wall of China in summer of 1997

Beihai Park, an Imperial Garden:
Lily pads in Beihai

During that first week or so in China, as my stomach and my new friends adjusted to the new sights, sounds, smells, and foreign language, we discovered this simple dish of Chinese Tomato and Eggs. Every restaurant in Beijing had it, it was easy to recognize in Chinese on the menu and say without people being confused, and it was a safe bet for eating as our stomachs became used to the new bacteria in this part of the world.
'Easy 'Easy

This recipe for Chinese Tomato and Eggs is not a dish seen often in Chinese restaurants United States, maybe because it’s too simple.  But it’s so delicious. It only takes 20 minutes or so, so it’s very fast. And, it can feed 2-4 for dinner when served with rice (2 as the only dish with the rice, 4 with another dish).

The key to this dish, which sounds plain but is not, is that the eggs get a touch of sesame oil, and the tomatoes get a touch of sugar. My version uses the secret ingredient of one tablespoon of Red Duck Ketchup, which adds just that little extra depth of flavor.
My secret ingredient to my Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe is a tablespoon of Red Duck Ketchup

Ingredients:

  • Some chopped green onions, with the white and green parts separated, I used about 4 green onions but I really like green onions!
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil, separated (you will use 2 and then 1 tablespoon)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 medium sized tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup

Directions:

  1. Beat eggs together; season with salt and pepper, and add the sesame oil. Whisk so it’s airy.
  2. Add two tablespoons of olive oil to a large pan (or wok if you have one, but it’s not absolutely necessary), turning up the heat to high. You should see the oil start to be steamy so you know it’s hot. Now add the white parts of the green onions (approximately – I still had some green-white parts and it was fine for me!) and sauté for about 30 seconds or so until fragrant.
  3. Next, add the egg mixture and let sit for 30 seconds. Stir and then carefully fold the eggs for another minute or less, just until the eggs are about to set (wherever it is shiny and still liquidy just fold down so it can cook for a few seconds until there are no more liquid parts), then immediately remove from heat and set aside on a plate.
    Setting aside eggs with green onions for the Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe
  4. In a small bowl, combine together  2 tablespoons of water  with the 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Mix until it all is incorporated into the liquid.
  5. Add 1 more tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. When the oil is steaming again, add the roughly chopped tomatoes and the cornstarch sugar water and my secret ingredient, the tablespoon of Red Duck ketchup. Let the tomatoes cook, stirring only a bit, until you can see the tomato meat firm up slightly and you can smell the tomatoes. This should only take about 5 minutes.
    You only need to roughly chop the tomatoes for the Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe Cook the tomatoes until it is fragrant and the flesh is more firm for the Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe, just a few minutes
  6. Pour the eggs you set aside earlier back into the pan and stir to mix the eggs and tomatoes. Add the green part of the green onion and after another good stir, pour into your serving dish.
    Easy comfort food of my Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe, enjoy with rice and is only 20 minutes from prep start to finish! Easy comfort food of my Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe, enjoy with rice and is only 20 minutes from prep start to finish!
  7. Serve with rice.
    Easy comfort food of my Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe, enjoy with rice and is only 20 minutes from prep start to finish!

You can fancify this dish with more vegetables like spinach, a bit of ginger, putting it on fried rice instead of regular rice. It can be breakfast, lunch or dinner – and I promise you, although it sounds simple, so does pasta with cheese (aka classic mac and cheese), and no one can deny the comfort of that dish. That’s what this Chinese Tomato and Eggs is.
My secret ingredient to my Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe is a tablespoon of Red Duck Ketchup

I am a huge fan of Red Duck Ketchup. It’s made from organic ingredients and no high fructose corn syrup (it’s 100% corn free), and is supporting a local business. The name of the ketchup comes from the fact the three founders are from University of Oregon and thus are fans of the Oregon Ducks. And ketchup is red… aka Red Duck.
 Coalition Brewing Spicy Ketchup Beer and Curry Red Ale were brewed with Red Duck Ketchup

Although I’m not specifically an Oregon Ducks fan, on the day I was born as my mom was sitting on the front steps as my dad prepared the car, she saw a mother duck and her ducklings under a bush (our backyard had a lake) walk out and she almost, almost nicknamed me Duck. Thank goodness I got Pech instead.

Not to mention, this is just the most delicious ketchup I have ever had. They make a few flavors (I also love their spicy ketchup and curry ketchup, and they sometimes make other seasonal flavors like Pumpkin Spice!). The Red Duck Original Ketchup flavor isn’t too sweet but has a little depth of flavor thanks to a bit of balsamic vinegar.

Red Duck Ketchup was a discovery for me at Feast Portland‘s Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting. This event, which takes place on Friday and Saturday on September 18 and 19, is a great value in that so many amazing local vendors are all gathered in one place, ALL are offering samples so you can try everything and know what you are buying!

Feast Portland 2014, Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting Feast Portland 2014, Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting Feast Portland 2014, Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting

That’s how I discovered and got to try Red Duck Ketchup, which I’m not sure I would have noticed normally since I’m not usually a big ketchup fan. But, Red Duck totally changed my tune.

This ketchup is amazing with anything and everything… and I loved it even when Coalition Brewing brewed a one keg special edition Spicy Ketchup Beer and a keg of Curry Red Ale with Red Duck Ketchup as part of National Ketchup Day. That’s right, this ketchup can even hold its own when used in beer!
Coalition Brewing Spicy Ketchup Beer and Curry Red Ale were brewed with Red Duck Ketchup Coalition Brewing Spicy Ketchup Beer and Curry Red Ale were brewed with Red Duck Ketchup

So of course it’s going to be awesome in your basic uses like paired on an Olympia Provisions hot dog, on your burgers… or as a secret ingredient of my Chinese Tomato and Eggs recipe.
Coalition Brewing Spicy Ketchup Beer and Curry Red Ale were brewed with Red Duck Ketchup as part of National Ketchup Day. So of course the ketchup is awesome paired on an Olympia Provisions hot dog.

Have you had Red Duck Ketchup, or Chinese Tomato and Eggs before? Have you studied abroad and learned of a new local dish during your visit that has special memories for you?

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Comments

  1. What a cool story!!! And this dish looks delicious!

  2. Pech- Your 1997 fashion is adorable! I am such a 90s girl, I’m glad to get to see this glimpse of you! As for the recipe- YUM! 1) I’ve never heard of it and 2) I want to try it immediately! I love a fancy egg dish, especially for dinner. Thanks so much for sharing!

  3. I’ve heard good things about the Red Duck brand. I love that they have alternate ketchup flavors!

  4. I love how this blog post connected with the past. Fun photos!

  5. Those photos are great!!!

    I had a Taiwanese friend in college whose parents came to visit and made tomatoes and eggs–I had never thought to combine them but it was delicious! I’m so glad you shared this recipe, I’d love to try it at home!

  6. Wow, I was just about to give up on all the tomatoes in our garden right now – I almost couldn’t fathom another tomato dish but I think this is the perfect remedy. Thank you, Pech!

  7. I feel like I must have tried Red Duck Ketchup before, but can’t quite remember… I need to try it again with that recommendation! And I hadn’t heard of Chinese Tomato and Eggs but I do love putting tomatoes in my eggs in the morning and I’m all about breakfast for dinner, so I’ll definitely give this is a try!

    • You will love Red Duck ketchup! You probably have tried it before as they were at Feast last year and show up on burgers and hot dogs in Portland too

  8. Man… this looks fantastic! I too have been looking for something else to do with tomatoes than sauces and salads. What a lovely option! I honestly would never have put tomatoes and Chinese in the same breath… I feel like I need to explore Chinese cuisine more now!

    • There’s a lot of Chinese cuisine that is out there from the different regions that gets missed because only a small sampling of the dishes seem to be listed on most American Chinese restaurant menus!

  9. What an interesting dish! I may pocket this away until next summer when we have fresh tomatoes again….

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