Introduction: Another Way to Get Eggs Ready for Egg Salad!

This one is part instructable, part suggestion, part (hopefully) catalyst for discussion.

As some one who has paid dues to the gods who insist in keeping alive the task of hard boiled egg peeling, a thought came to mind one morning while poaching eggs...

Wouldn't it be easier, cleaner and faster to hard poach eggs than to hard boil them for egg salads?  Some may argue that perhaps it takes as long to poach them than to boil them... I reply to that by pointing out that for poached eggs, you only have to crack the egg open; when you hard boil them, you have to peel them after they are cooked which depending on your technique, takes quite a while.

So here is a quick "how to hard poach eggs" for those who have not done it before.

Step 1: The Ingredients and Equipment

ingredients:

- 5 cups of water (note:  do not use hot water!  the water from the water heater stays stagnant in the tank until you use it.  go for the cold water!  that also applies for when you get water for pasta, rice, etc.   : )

- 5 eggs (free range all the way)

- 1/2 Tbls white vinegar

equipment:

- one medium size thick bottom pot

- a small bowl in which to crack open the eggs

- a strainer with long handle or a slatted spoon

- a plate or tray lined with waxed paper (you could also use a clean kitchen towel, a piece of cheese cloth, etc.  i recommend not to use paper towels because they some times stick to the eggs)

Step 2: Get the Water Ready!

- Once you pour the water into the pot, add the vinegar to the water and turn the heat up to medium high heat.

- While the water is coming to a slowly rolling boil, get ready to crack the eggs one at a time to add to the water.

Note:  Rinse the eggs shells to get rid of the left over bit of egg whites.  Then you can add them to your compost bin, or grind them in the food processor and sprinkle them all over your garden.  The eggs shells are mostly calcium and plants like tomato plants really like calcium-rich soil.

Step 3: Eggs in the Water

Time for the eggs to go in the water!

Note:  Some people swirl the water right before they add each egg into the water so the egg whites "wrap" around the yolk.

- Pour each egg one at a time into the water.  Wait until the whites start to turn well, white and with the strainer or slatted spoon move the whites over the yolks.  Keep on adding all of the eggs.  Cooking time is about 9 - 10 mins depending on how hot your stove gets, the altitude where you live and other variables.

Step 4: Eggs Out of the Water

- Check the eggs by well, touching them... take one out of the water that if it feels like a hard boiled egg (i.e., not soft), well, it is cooked!

- Take all of the eggs out of the water and place on the plate/train lined with waxed paper.

- Let them cool off and start the mashing madness!

Comments

author
holly-g (author)2014-01-27

Brilliant!!!
Peeling eggs sucks or I mean I suck!

author
Takelababy (author)2012-09-05

Hard boiled fresh eggs have to be painstakingly peeled, but storage eggs don't. Whack the middle of the shell with the edge of a kitchen knife and the shell should come away in two halves. I've fork beaten eggs and used the microwave to scramble. Takes 60 seconds for two large eggs in my micro.

author
razorwinged (author)Takelababy2012-09-07

cool! thanks for the info. the experimentation with eggs continues...

author
westfw (author)2012-09-05

I've had someone tell me that you can make egg salad from scrambled eggs, but I've never quite had the courage to try it. I like this idea as a sort of intermediate level of simplification. It'd probably work with well-done fried eggs or baked eggs as well. Maybe even microwaved!

author
razorwinged (author)westfw2012-09-05

interesting... my main concern with the scramble and fried egg methods is the addition of oil to the egg salad recipe. meaning, you will be cooking the eggs with some sort of oil/fat and then making an already fat and cholesterol heavy salad. however, when in a hurry... baking the eggs may work but may take longer to cook them and then to cool them. i will buy more eggs and experiment! : )

author
westfw (author)razorwinged2012-09-06

You don't put mayo in your egg salad? Mayo is just a form of jellied oil.
(butter might not work as well, since it could be too hard at egg-salad temperatures.)

author
razorwinged (author)westfw2012-09-07

yes, i do add mayo to egg salad and often make the mayo myself. knowing what goes into the mayo itself is why i say that egg salad is already heavy in fat and cholesterol, and why i would not cook the eggs by frying them not by using any other method that involves extra fat. i agree about the butter. : )

author
scoochmaroo (author)2012-09-05

I think we always used hard boiled because the process of cooking them took less effort/attention. But the peeling is sure a pain! I'll definitely try this next time. I bet it could even be done in the microwave.

author
razorwinged (author)scoochmaroo2012-09-05

i do not own a microwave yet now i am curious about cooking eggs in one. for me, yes, it takes less attention to hard boil them yet more time to peel them... and clean after the peeling. hence, i would rather spend the time poaching them and prep the rest of the ingredients for the egg salad while the eggs are cooling off.

author
ToniRose (author)2012-09-05

Love it! Does this method work for soft poaching? If so, how do you avoid overcooking?

author
razorwinged (author)ToniRose2012-09-05

yes, you can soft poach eggs this way. scoop the egg out of the water after about 3 minutes and touch it. you want the whites not to feel like slime (i.e. that they are cooked) and for the yolks to feel soft. when i was learning to poach eggs, i spent a lot of time poking poached eggs. order some at your favourite bistro and touch them before you eat them.

to tell you the truth, i have yet to meet any one who just times the cooking of poached eggs. i mean, if you always use the same size of eggs, heat up the water to the same temperature every time and control every variable, timing should work. however, the "take out of the water and touch the egg" has been the method that i have learned, used and confirmed with others in home and professional kitchens.

author
Ojsmudge (author)2012-09-05

Um just a question why haven't you used an egg poacher ? It may be a stupid question sorry if it is (I'm a rubbish cook)

author
razorwinged (author)Ojsmudge2012-09-05

not a stupid question! i just do not own an egg poacher. actually, i have never even used one. : )

author
jessyratfink (author)2012-09-05

I love it! Makes me wonder why all of us don't do it this way.

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