It seems like it should be the easiest thing in the world, but making a pitch-perfect hard-cooked egg every time is trickier than it seems. All too often, you get that stubborn one that just won't peel, leaving you with about 30% of the egg you started with - the rest is lost to the little pile of stubborn shells.
If this sounds familiar, don't throw-in your egg-making towel just yet…here comes science to the rescue! This simple life hack will help you win your hard-cooked egg game - every time.
Step 1: Hard to Peel? Boil Them!
Yes, hard-cooked eggs are incredibly stubborn sometimes when it's time to get that pesky little shell off.
You have to steam the eggs.
You'll notice I have been calling them hard-cooked eggs and not hard-boiled eggs. That's because despite the fact that you put them in water, it's the steam that actually cooks the egg.
So…naturally the first step is to generate some steam; I place a pan with about a half-inch of water in it and bring it to a good-going, rolling boil. Once you've established this it's time to add your eggs. Here, I've used four eggs. Cover and cook them like this for 12 minutes (3 minutes per egg).
Step 2: Ice Your Eggs Down
Once the eggs have cooked for 12 minutes, remove them from the pot (with a tongs...they'e HOT), and place them in a bowl of ice cold water.
Step 3: Peel & Eat
After the eggs have cooled a bit in the ice water, you should be able to easily remove the shell. If you are still having problems, it's likely because the outer membrane of the shell is sticking to the white. To rectify this, run the egg under water, then peel.
Step 4: Check Out the Book!
This little life hack appeared on page 193 of Cooking for Geeks. Click here to explore the book and read two chapters for free!
For more science-based recipes, life hacks, and all manner of sciency culinary wonders, visit my YouTube channel.