Fried egg floss is a much-lauded special ingredient at fish soup stalls, but it can turn your healthy meal into junk food.
This lesser-known ingredient is usually cooked by fish soup hawkers, and is a hot favourite among Singapore foodies for the texture that fried egg floss gives to the soup. It looks like deep-fried batter but is actually made from beaten eggs – yolk and all – that are drizzled into hot oil. The floss-like end product is fished out. Fried egg floss can also be found topping other dishes such as buttered prawns.
Blame it on the oil
Claims of “too many eggs raise your cholesterol level” are misleading. The problem lies with the fat used to fry the eggs – that’s what impacts how healthy the dish is for you. Suffice to say, deep-fried egg floss isn’t. Our MH nutritionist, Jaclyn Reutens, tells us: “If palm oil is used for deep-frying, it’ll be high in saturated fat, which is unhealthy." As it turns out, our neighbourhood hawker does prefer palm oil, as it’s stable for cooking at high temperatures due to, precisely, the saturated fat content.
Turns fish soup into junk food
A typical fried egg contains about 90 calories – 63 of it from the 7g of fat. However, Jaclyn estimates a standard golf ball-sized serving of fried egg floss contains about 200 calories. That means asking for more in your fish soup turns your healthy meal into junk food. “But it would not affect your diet too much if you have it once or twice a week, especially if you’re exercising regularly,” she says. “That said, you should be having sliced fish soup instead of the fried version because the former has a good 300 calories less.”
A healthier alternative
If you want to give your homemade soups some extra zing, we’ve got a better idea: small pieces of fried tofu. “It’ll give the crunchy texture and still has protein,” Jaclyn explains. “Use canola or sunflower oil, which is higher in monounsaturated fats but can withstand deep-frying.”