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Maggie Beer puts her spin on a Japan Chawanmushi - a savoury egg custard.
Break eggs into a bowl and whisk them together with chopsticks to combine without aerating, make sure all the egg white is properly amalgamated and there is no froth.
Prepare boiling water for the bamboo steamer to go on top; this does 6-7 moulds depending on the size of the moulds.
Add dashi stock (see method below) to the beaten eggs.
Place ginger into bottom of cups, pour on egg mixture and place in the steamer over boiling water with the lid on for 10 mins.
Check that the custard is set. Take off, allow to cool a little.
Take the stone out and the skin the umeboshi and mince. Add sesame oil and vino cotto.
Place a small amount of the umeboshi sauce on top of each custard and garnish with chopped chives.
Add dried shitake, kombu and water to a saucepan and steep for 1 hour.
Bring water to the boil, take pot off the heat and remove shitake and kombu.
Sprinkle in the bonito flakes and heat to boiling.
Turn off heat and rest for 15 mins.
Pass dashi stock through a fine strainer.
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