Tokneneng 101: How Much Do You Know About It?

Tokneneng … it’s everywhere! 😀 It’s impossible not to miss this orange street food. It’s cooked and sold in almost every street corner (well, almost 😉)

If you’re wondering what tokneneng is, then you’ve come to the right place.

Tokneneng: What Exactly Is It?

For some of you who aren’t in the know, tokneneng is a close rival of fishballs. They’re two of the most popular street foods.

Tokneneng is actually just hard-boiled egg that’s coated with a waffle-like batter that’s bright orange. Thanks to its eye-catching color, it never fails to get anybody’s attention. 

Tokneneng is actually just a hard-boiled egg that’s coated with a waffle-like batter that’s bright orange. Thanks to its eye-catching color, it never fails to get anybody’s attention. 

The good old tokneneng is just hard-boiled egg coated with waffle-like batter.

Tokneneng Recipe

This easy-to-follow recipe will show you why these yummy egg treats are colored orange.

Below is the list of ingredients that you need to make some yummy tokneneng:

  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 6 pieces of hard-boiled eggs
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • ½ of pepper
  • ¼ cup of annatto seeds soaked in 1 cup of water
  • Cornstarch

The preparation for this particular street food is pretty easy.👍

How To Make Tokneneng Coating

Here’s how to make the coating. Combine the cornstarch with the hard-boiled eggs. Slather the hard-boiled eggs with some cornstarch, coating each one of them. Then set aside.

Combine the all-purpose flour with a dash of salt and pepper. Then mix well. Pour in the water where the annatto seeds were soaked. This will give a bright orange color. Make sure to use a strainer to separate the annatto seeds from the water. Mix well again.

Combine the all-purpose flour with a dash of salt and pepper. Then mix well. Pour in the water where the annatto seeds were soaked. This will give a bright orange color. Make sure to use a strainer to separate the annatto seeds from the water. Mix well again.

At this point, you now have a bright orange batter. Mix in the hard-boiled eggs, making sure each one of them is coated well.

Once all the hard-boiled eggs are covered with the orange batter, prepare a pan of cooking oil. Heat it up.

When the oil is hot enough, start putting in the hard-boiled eggs. You can do that by using a spoon. Scoop up an egg from the bowl and then carefully put it in the pan of hot oil.

When the oil is hot enough, start putting in the hard-boiled eggs. You can do that by using a spoon. Scoop up an egg from the bowl and then carefully put it in the pan of hot oil.

You’re almost done. Once the batter is cooked (it takes just a couple of seconds), you can scoop out the eggs to place on a serving plate.

Manong’s Version

The photos below show Manong’s version.

The hard-boiled egg is dipped in the orange batter.😃 I wasn’t privy to his batter recipe.
Once the hard-boiled egg is coated with the bright orange batter, it’s deep-fried until it’s cooked. If you’re wondering what the white balls are, they’re vegetable balls. 😄 Who said street food wasn’t healthy? 🤣🤣🤣
Once the tokneneng is cooked, it’s transferred to a strainer to shake off the excess (and I mean, super excess oil). 😁

Best Paired With Some Tokneneng Sauce

Tokneneng is best paired with some sauce. It tastes so good if it’s drowning in sauce. Hence, it’s the reason why it’s always sold with some yummy and sometimes, “unidentified” sauces on the side.

There are even some tokneneng stands where everybody dips into the same sauce and that’s not exactly safe to do these days.

So, why not make your own sauce at home, right? 😃

Don’t settle for just a bowl of vinegar to serve as a sauce. You can do better than that. 

Don’t settle for just a bowl of vinegar to serve as a sauce. You can do better than that.

Make your own sauce. Here’s an easy-to-follow recipe, care of Chef Tatung.

  • 11/2 cups of water
  • 6tbsps of soy sauce
  • 6tbsps of brown sugar
  • 3tbsps of  all-purpose flour
  • 3tbsps of  cornstarch
  • Minced garlic (as much as you want)
  • Minced onion (as much as you want)
  • Minced chili (as much as you want)
  • A dash of pepper

Now, for the directions. Heat up the water in a pan. Then add in the soy sauce. Add in the brown sugar. As thickening agents, add in the flour and the cornstarch.

Then add in the garlic, onion, chili, and a dash of pepper. Wait for it to simmer and thicken. Once it’s thickened, it’s all set for your enjoyment.

Ways To Eat It

Here are some ways to eat tokneneng when you’re dining al fresco with manong. Unlike fishballs, you don’t have the freedom to pick on the tokneneng.

Do you know how some people say that they will make tusok tusok the fishballs? Well, unfortunately, that’s not possible with tokneneng. Tokneneng is more ala carte.  It’s served to you. 

Do you know how some people say that they will make tusok tusok the fishballs? Well, unfortunately, that’s not possible with tokneneng. Tokneneng is more ala carte. It’s served to you.

You always have the option to eat there; al fresco … overlooking the traffic of cars and people. Since I was double-parked and the traffic guy was giving me the look 😠, I decided to do a take-out.

Manong’s stand is right outside Anson Supermarket in Project 3, Quezon City.

If you do decide to eat right there, the manong has a creative way to serve you.

He hands you a cup that’s wrapped in a clear plastic bag. You can use it for your tokneneng.  Like fishballs, tokneneng is better off swimming in sauce. Manong has a variety of sauces for you to choose from. Most of these sauces are vinegar-based.

He hands you a cup that’s wrapped in a clear plastic bag. You can use it for your tokneneng. Like fishballs, tokneneng is better off swimming in sauce. Manong has a variety of sauces for you to choose from. Most of these sauces are vinegar-based.

Notice the plastic-wrapped cup? That’s where you put the tokneneng if you want to eat on location.

Barbecue Stick Is A Critical Cutlery

Manong also hands you a barbecue stick (cut in half) so that you can eat the tokneneng. So, in a way, you’re making it tusok but not directly from the cooking pan.

With fishballs, you can make tusok directly from the cooking pan. Well, you can’t do that with tokneneng.

Manong will cook the pieces of tokneneng and once they’re cooked, he will place three pieces of tokneneng in a cup (wrapped in plastic), ready to be served. Hence, tokneneng has more of an ala carte touch. 😀

Once you’re done eating, you just return the cup to manong. He then removes the clear plastic bag and voila! It’s still a super clean cup, ready for the next customer. Creative! 

Once you’re done eating, you just return the cup to manong. He then removes the clear plastic bag and voila! It’s still a super clean cup, ready for the next customer. Creative!

Tokneneng Calories For The Weight-Watchers 

Here’s the thing with tokneneng; it’s very easy to eat a lot of it because it’s so good. It’s not enough to just eat one piece of it. You’re bound to go for more than just one order.

For starters, it’s a very affordable snack. Second of all, it’s just sooo good.

For starters, it’s a very affordable snack. Second of all, it’s just sooo good.

Now, let’s get back to calories. How many tokneneng calories will it cost you?

Well, according to various sources, there are more than a hundred calories in a piece of tokneneng.

Well, according to various sources, there are more than a hundred calories in a piece of tokneneng.

That makes a lot of sense since one hard-boiled egg already has about 77 calories. Considering all the other ingredients that go into making tokneneng, it’s possible for the calories of each piece of tokneneng to exceed 77.

It’s safe to say that a piece of tokneneng has about 100 calories, more or less.

It’s safe to say that a piece of tokneneng has about 100 calories, more or less.

That means, there are about 300 calories in one order of tokneneng. Usually, there are three pieces of tokneneng in one order.

This does not include the calories that come with the sauce. Given the sauce ingredients mentioned above, you can make a rough estimate as to how many calories there are in a tokneneng with sauce.

It’s Not Kwek Kwek!

Let’s get this straight … tokneneng is not kwek kwek. This obviously means that kwek kwek is not tokneneng as well. 😀

A lot of folks interchange the two but you’re just going to confuse manong if you keep on doing it.

Tokneneng is bigger than kwek kwek. 

Tokneneng is bigger than kwek kwek.

The hard-boiled egg used for tokneneng could either be from a chicken or duck. That explains the size.

Kwek kwek is a lot smaller since the egg comes from quail.

These are cute little kwek-kweks. 😀
If you want to keep your poise, I recommend you stick to kwek kwek. That way, you won’t have a mouthful of egg. 😄

Where Did They Get Their Catchy Names?

Face it. Tokeneneng and kwek kwek are catchy names.

Tokneneng is derived from the Batute komiks, made popular in the ’70s. Batute, the main character had his own language. He used the term tokneneng to refer to an egg. 

Tokneneng is derived from the Batute komiks, made popular in the ’70s. Batute, the main character had his own language. He used the term tokneneng to refer to an egg.

The origin of the name kwek kwek is quite confusing. It’s called kwek kwek because that’s the sound ducks make … kwek kwek. However, the egg used in kwek kwek is not from ducks but from quails. 

The origin of the name kwek kwek is quite confusing. It’s called kwek kwek because that’s the sound ducks make … kwek kwek. However, the egg used in kwek kwek is not from ducks but from quails.

Nonetheless, it’s no use overthinking it since that’s just the way it is. 😄

Tokneneng and kwek kwek 😍

How Much Are They?

The tokneneng goes for 14 pesos per piece. Take note; it’s a big egg and you’re bound to feel full after just one piece.

Most folks usually go for three pieces per order.

Kwek kwek usually goes for 10 pesos for three pieces.

Of course, the price varies depending on the area. That’s how much it is in our area.

There you have it. You now know a lot about tokneneng and kwek kwek.

A Similar Dish   

Since we are on the topic of eggs, did you know that there’s a Thai egg dish that’s similar to tokneneng?

Well, it’s similar in a way that it’s made out of hard-boiled eggs. However, there’s no coating for the eggs.

The Thai egg dish is called the son-in-law eggs. If you’re wondering why it’s called son-in-law eggs, well … so am I.

The Thai egg dish is called the son-in-law eggs. If you’re wondering why it’s called son-in-law eggs, well … so am I.

According to Ayaraproducts.com, the egg dish is a mom’s warning to their sons-in-law who hurt their daughters. Hence, it’s more of a warning dish.😄

The eggs are hard-boiled to perfection and then deep-fried. Once they’re done, they’re slathered with spices. The spices include shallots, brown or palm sugar, fish sauce, tamarind, and peppers.

While the egg dish sounds very yummy, it seems more like a deathwish for cheating husbands.😉

Nonetheless, son-in-law eggs could be distant relatives of our tokneneng. They’re both made of hard-boiled eggs that could easily satisfy the tummy.

Nonetheless, son-in-law eggs could be distant relatives of our tokneneng. They’re both made of hard-boiled eggs that could easily satisfy the tummy.

So, if you haven’t tried tokneneng yet, go for it. You have the option of buying it from manong or making it yourself. Either way, you’re going to experience the wonderful taste of this particualr street food

Don’t forget the sauce. Tokneneng is always better with some sauce. If you do choose to buy from manong, give him a pat on the back. Thank and encourage him for keeping tokneneng alive in the streets. If it weren’t for them, tokneneng might have gone into extinction.

May you now have a deep appreciation of these foods when you see them in the streets. ❤️😍

What is your favorite street food? Feel free to share it with us in the comment section.

2 thoughts on “Tokneneng 101: How Much Do You Know About It?

  1. Avatar

    I remember eating tokneneng when I was in school. It was actually a ritual for us to eat some tokneneng before going home. It was our instant merienda. 🙂 Thanks for the recipe. I will make some tokneneng using chicken eggs.

    Reply
  2. Avatar

    I tried the recipe and it was a success. My kids loved it. Since we couldn’t go out and buy from our suki, I decided to make. Success! Thanks.

    Reply

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