Translated by Yukina Sekine
Only In Wakura: How To Make Wakura Hot Spring Eggs
Making hot-spring eggs is a definite must-do when visiting Wakura Onsen(和倉温泉). Hot-spring eggs (温泉卵) are made by immersing raw eggs at the source of a hot spring for a few minutes. There are many hot springs all over Japan, but the flavors of the hot-spr
Written by Ito Kentaro
Making hot spring eggs is a definite must-do when visiting Wakura Onsen. Onsen tamago or hot spring eggs are made by immersing raw eggs at the source of a hot spring for a few minutes.
There are many hot springs all over Japan, but the flavors of the hot spring eggs vary depending on the type of minerals contained in the hot spring source itself.
When you immerse an egg at Wakura Onsen, you will taste a hot spring egg that can't be had anywhere else.
1. Buy Raw Eggs
What you need is a normal set of raw eggs. These eggs do not have to be any special type of eggs. You can buy them at any grocery store, or you can sometimes find them at souvenir stores in certain areas.
2. Find a Hot Spring Source
Extremely high temperatures are absolutely necessary for making hot spring eggs. Low temperature hot spring sources or hot springs where people can bathe are not hot enough to make hot-spring eggs. At some onsen, they provide a place specifically for making hot spring eggs. You will find many such locations in the town of Wakura Onsen. For example, there is a hot spring source just for making hot spring eggs at the public baths and in the center square. You can sometimes find them at hot spring hotels too. The key is to find a "ざる" (zaru/colander) sign.
3. Immerse the Eggs
Once you find a hot spring source, it's time to soak the eggs. If the eggs are sold in a net, it's perfectly fine to immerse the eggs net and all. Using the colander (ざる) makes the process of taking the eggs out of the hot spring source easier. If someone else's eggs are already in the colander, please wait for your turn. Just because nobody is around doesn't mean you can freely eat them!You need a watch when immersing the eggs. The necessary amount of immersing time differs depending on the temperature of the hot water. At Wakura Onsen, it's about 15 to 20 minutes.
4. Wait Until the Eggs are Ready
The hardest part about making hot-spring eggs is this waiting time. Waiting for the eggs feels like an eternity. The good news is that at Wakura Onsen, there's foot baths and hand baths nearby the places to make hot spring eggs, so you can relax and enjoy soaking your hands and feet while you wait.
5. Take Out the Eggs
After the eggs are boiled, carefully take out the eggs. They're really hot, so please be careful. The timing of this process is extremely important. If you take them out too early the eggs are too soft, and if you boil them too long they become too hard. Take your eggs out at 15 minutes if you prefer your eggs to be soft-boiled, and at 20 minutes if you like hard-boiled eggs.
It's finally time to eat the long-awaited hot spring eggs. The hot water at Wakura Onsen contains salt. Thus, your Wakura hot spring eggs will have a salty flavor and you can enjoy your eggs as they are. Use salt only if you feel the need to add more taste to them. Collect your egg shells in a plastic bag and throw them away in the garbage bin: don't throw away the egg shells on the ground around the area.
How to Enjoy Your Hot Spring Eggs Even More
The hot spring eggs are delicious as they are, but here's an exclusive Wakura tip to enjoy your eggs even more:
There is a salt called Suzu (珠洲) produced nearby Wakura Onsen. Interestingly, the combination of the local salt and the hot spring eggs is exceptional! The salt is sold in certain souvenir shops in the town center, so you might want to pick some up when buying your eggs; just sprinkle some on your peeled hot spring eggs and enjoy. The leftover salt can still be used as souvenirs. Please give this highly recommended experience a try during your stay at Wakura Onsen.