The Main Rule is to Keep the Exact Time of Boiling
Wonderfully tender scrambled eggs, taut boiled eggs or elegant coddled eggs – all these ways of cooking eggs and the exact number of minutes of cooking and a few details that are not difficult to remember.
How to Cook Hard Boiled Eggs?
Boiled eggs are not just basis for a breakfast or a fast snack, they are also often an ingredient for pies and salads, as well as an addition to several soups. It is very important that the egg doesn’t have an unpleasant gray circle around the yolk, that the white doesn’t become rubber-like or that the white and the yolk do not remain liquid. You can avoid these culinary catastrophes by following the correct order of actions and keeping the exact time of boiling.
Just as the infamous Laputans by Swift could not come to an agreement on the question, which end of an egg should be broken, contemporary chefs as well can not decide in which water they should boil the eggs: in boiling or in cold. Supporters of the first method say that they see no difference between the two, but their method can shorten the cooking time significantly.
Those who put eggs into the boiling water, advise puncturing the egg with a special device or adding some vinegar, salt or soda, which would cause the egg whites to coagulate and prevent them from escaping through the cracks.
Regardless of the cooking time, the eggs should be room temperature before you put them in the water.
Put one or several eggs into the pot or a scoop. If you cook several eggs, make sure that they all lay on the bottom in a single layer. Otherwise you will have to cook them separately. Cover the eggs with cold water so that there is 3-4 cm of water above them. Boil the water. You can cover the eggs with the top and switch off the fire or lower the fire to medium and let them cook the eggs without the top. The eggs will be ready in 12-15 minutes if cooked under the top and in 10-12 if cooked in the boiling water. The exact time of cooking also depends on the egg size. The smaller the egg, the faster it will be cooked and visa versa.
To stop the process of cooking you should rapidly cool the eggs. There are also two methods: you can accurately pour the hot water and cover the eggs with the cold instead, or you can take the eggs out of the hot water using a skimmer and put them in a bowl with cold water.
Cooking eggs for more than 15 minutes or leaving them in hot water for long would cause the yolk loose it’s color and begin issuing an unpleasant sulfuric smell.
Making Scrambled Eggs and Coddled Eggs
Cooking scrambled eggs is no more difficult than boiling them. Time also plays an essential role here. Too little time would leave the egg white liquid while too much time will leave you with a coddled egg with a yolk liquid in the middle and hardened at the sides. Taking incorrect time for cooking a coddled eggs will result either in a scrambled egg with tender yolk and hardened white or in a boiled egg with crumbling yolk.
Take a pot or a scoop of a suitable size to place all eggs on the same level. Fill it with water so that it would cover your eggs when you place them in it. Boil the water. Take the eggs of room temperature and place them into the water using a skimmer or a tablespoon. Lower the heat level. The water should boil but without much bubbles. To make scrambled eggs: cook big eggs for 3 min. 30 sec.; middle-sized eggs – exactly 3 minutes; and a small egg (i.e. quail egg) for 2 min.40 sec.
To make coddled eggs: cook big eggs for 4 min. 20 sec.; middle-sized egg – 3 min. 50 sec. and a small one for 3,5 min.
Place the cooked eggs into a cold water for 1-2 minutes. Pour the water out and refill your pot with cold water, let the eggs sit for 1-2 minutes.
The famous chef of the “kitchen chemistry” Heston Blumenthal cooks eggs the other way.
He puts them into the cold water as for simple boiling, covers with the top and brings to the boil on a good fire. As soon as the water starts boiling, Blumenthal switches the fire off, takes the pot off the stove and keeps the egg under the top in the hot water exactly for 6 minutes. He serves the hot eggs immediately after cooking chopping a tip off of them with a special guillotine cutter.
If you have mastered almost all ways of cooking eggs this is the high time for you to move onto the height of the egg-cooking – the poached egg. This is a scrambled egg cooked without a shell. This is the best way to cook fresh eggs as you would not have to peel off the shell.
Fill half of a small pot with water and bring to the boil. Add salt. Break the eggs into a small bowl and add vinegar. Whip the salted water with a wire whisk so that there is a tunnel in the middle.
Pour the egg into the tunnel and cook exactly 3 minutes. Using an hour-glass or a time is best of all for noting the time. Take the egg out of the water using the skimmer and serve immediately.