The Lexingtonienne

August13th

1 Comment

Egghead

Posted in: Food

It’s Friday, otherwise known in my house as “order pizza” or “pick up ribs and eat on the couch” night. Who wants to cook on Friday? Not me. But Saturday or Sunday morning, you just might want some breakfast. So today I have a very back-to-basics post about EGGS!

eggs

Since this post is titled Egghead and since I am a big nerd, here’s some noteworthy info about eggs. Eggs are hermetically sealed in their shells, meaning the shell acts as a natural barrier against bacteria. This means you can leave them out on the counter for a while and they’ll be totally fine. In fact, in other countries, you often see eggs sold unrefrigerated. When recipes call for eggs to be at room temperature, leave the whole (unbroken) eggs out on the counter for about 30 minutes and you’re good to go.

eggs

For hard boiled eggs, I bring a pot of water to a rapid boil. Then I turn down the heat to low, gently lower my eggs into the water with a spoon, cover, and cook for about 12 minutes. When they are done cooking, immerse them immediately in very cold water. This will prevent that unappetizing-looking (though harmless) gray line from forming around the yolk.

eggs

Do you know how to tell when an egg (still in the shell) is hard boiled? Turn it on its side on the countertop and give it a spin. If it spins like you’re playing spin-the-bottle, it’s hard boiled. If it wobbles around aimlessly, it’s still raw in there.

eggs

It is best to break eggs on a flat surface, such as your countertop. Breaking them on the edge of a bowl tends to cause small bits of the shell to fracture inwards — i.e. you’re more likely to be fishing out shell fragments.

eggs

eggs

If you do need to fish out a shell fragment (it happens), use a large piece of eggshell to do so. Eggshell is porous, so it does a more efficient job of combing through egg white to go after the undesired fragments — as opposed to using your finger, which annoyingly pushes the eggshell pieces away from you.

eggs

eggs

eggs

Scrambled eggs, I think, is one of the first dishes that many of us learn to make. It’s very simple to do, but I discovered some tips along the way to make scrambled eggs really good. First, do NOT add milk. It just makes them watery. Whisk eggs thoroughly in a bowl with a fork, getting lots of air whipped in so your eggs are light and frothy.

eggs

eggs

eggs

Meanwhile, heat a skillet (nonstick is best if you have it) over very low heat. Not quite the lowest possible, but maybe next to lowest. When the pan is hot, melt a pat of butter into the pan. It should sizzle and melt pretty quickly since your pan is already hot.

butter melted

eggs

eggs

Pour in your eggs. Lightly salt & pepper. It takes some patience, but cooking low and slow is the secret to great scrambled eggs. Gently push the eggs around and scrape off the pan with a rubber spatula until they are mostly scrambled but there’s still some runniness. It might seem like slow-going, but stay the course.

S&P

eggs

eggs

Sprinkle some cheese over top — cheddar shreds, American, parmesan, whatever you have. The very second the eggs look like scrambled eggs, take them right off the heat, give them a last stir, and coax them onto your plate.

cheddar shreds

eggs

eggs

Two things make scrambled eggs rubbery: 1) cooking them over too high a flame, and 2) overcooking them even the slightest bit. So remember, cook them slowly over very low heat, and as soon as the last bit of runniness disappears, they’re done.

eggs

You can also make use of your leftovers by adding diced ham or shredded turkey, sauteed zucchini (my favorite, with grated parmesan), onion, peppers, mushrooms, fresh spinach, caramelized leeks, goat cheese, grilled chicken, herbs, you get the idea. This, of course, is called a scramble as opposed to an omelet, which is only a slightly more complicated process, but frankly, scrambles are en vogue right now. You get to clean out your fridge AND have a fabulous brunch!

eggs

Have a great weekend! (Orange you glad I didn’t say, “have an egg-cellent weekend?”)


Hannah

1 Comment

  • Comment by HaleyD — August 13, 2010 @ 7:11 pm

    Why thank you, Alton!

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