Egg-cited over Egg Tarts

Do you know that World Egg Day is celebrated on every second Friday of October?


Well, I must admit that I did not know it until now.


Cantonese-style steamed egg custard made by
my mum using grandmother's traditional recipe
It was while I was dwelling on the pleasure of eating eggs – in particular mum’s steamed Egg Custard and Egg Tarts filled to the brim with tasty egg custard – that I stumbled upon this egg-citing piece of information.


My first taste of Cantonese-style daan tarn, a smooth steamed egg custard, was the warm dessert that grandmother used to make for supper on cool, rainy nights.


Side Note: This dish was so named because the Cantonese word for egg is tarn and the method of preparation, steamed or double-boiled is called, daan.


I observed that only fresh large eggs were used, whipped with white sugar to a smooth and frothy consistency in an enamel pot before evaporated milk was added and then steamed.


The famous Portuguese egg tarts I tasted on my
 visit to Lord Stow's Bakery in Macau

Grandfather, our Ah Kong, was a great fan of this delightful dessert and I remember how he would add a splash of brandy to his portion before savouring it.


I am more than pleased that my mother and her sisters have inherited grandmother’s recipe for daan tarn and over the years, we discovered that the youngest among all the Ng sisters, have mastered grandmother’s skill and technique in creating the creamiest, tastiest and smoothest daan tarn, ever.


Meanwhile I have been a fan of Cantonese tarn tat or egg tarts ever since I discovered them from watching Hong Kong television drama shows where it was a popular treat served at cha charn thiang or tea restaurants.


Portuguese egg tarts by Oriental Kopi

Casual and inexpensive, the cha charn thiang serves a menu with Western-style items that included Egg Tarts, French Toast and Milk Tea, all with a Chinese twist.


On a travel assignment as a guest of the Macau Government Tourism Office, I had the pleasure to dine in a traditional cha charn thiang and savoured a delightful dim sum spread that included typical Cantonese egg tarts among the desserts.


The tour also took us to experience Lord Stow’s freshly-baked, famous Portuguese Egg Tarts, and I even hand-carried these delicacies home for my mum to enjoy.


Thin and flaky pastry filled with generous
portion of smooth and creamy egg custard

So keen was I on good egg tarts that I have even gone on Egg Tart Trails here, in a quest to find the egg tarts that matched with mine and my mum’s palate.


Regretfully, most of the egg tarts here failed to meet with our expectations, not only because of its thick and tasteless pastry but also because the egg custard filling was often a deceptive dollop, clearly not in proportion with its pastry.


Our quest for good egg tarts have thus far reaped one positive conclusion on the superior taste of German-style egg tarts, filled with egg custard which is not too sweet and baked within a delicious crumbly biscuit-like pastry.


While on my Egg Tart Trail, I did not hesitate to take advantage of the Buy-Six-Get-One-Free offer for Portuguese Egg Tarts made by the bakery at Oriental Kopi, a kopitiam chain of restaurants which recently opened in the Mid-Valley Southkey Mall.


Savour a satisfying mouthful with every bite

With my palate well-trained and familiar with the taste of grandmother’s recipe for egg custard, I was pleasantly surprised to discover a similar taste and texture in the egg custard filling of their signature Portuguese Egg Tarts.

Another plus point must be the generous portion of egg custard stuffed within the thin and flaky pastry for me to savour its rich and creamy taste with every bite.


Mmm… It was pure nostalgia to enjoy a familiar taste, so similar to that of grandmother’s recipe for egg custard, in these egg tarts by Oriental Kopi.


Don’t take my word for it because, “The proof of the pudding is in the eating…”


Go have a taste of the tarn tat by Oriental Kopi and find out for yourself why egg tarts are listed among our most popular Asian desserts. Happy World Egg Day 2021!


Kedai Kopitiam Oriental Kopi is located at Unit LG-054 Mid-Valley Southkey Mall, Johor Baru and at No. 30 Jalan Dedap 22, Taman Johor Jaya, 81100 Johor Baru, Johor.


P.S. Another question: Do you know anyone who has an “egg” in her name?

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