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A Chef’s Guide to Cooking Perfect Eggs Every Time

Working for the last five years as a chef has taught me many things about cooking and the various correct techniques.

Working for the last three years as a nutrition consultant has taught me that a lot of people get a little bit nervous around the subject of eggs.

So whether you’re a microwave scrambler or your poached eggs disappear into the water the minute you’ve dropped them – I’ve put together a really simple, easy-to-follow tutorial for perfect eggs every time.

Scrambled Eggs

The perfect scramble to me is smooth and creamy, as well as being light and fluffy in texture. Dry, overcooked eggs are the worst, and rubbery microwave eggs should be forgotten. The top tips for perfect scrambled eggs look like this:

  • Don’t have your pan too hot! If your pan is too hot when you crack your eggs into it, they will cook too quickly and you will end up with lumpy, dry eggs that taste and smell a little burnt.
  • Crack your eggs into a jug and whisk them briefly. You don’t need to over whisk them because keeping the yolks a little intact will make for a beautiful, vibrant orange colour throughout your scramble. However, whisking them up a little will help the eggs to cook evenly in the pan and keep them nice and fluffy.
  • Stir Stir Stir! Leave your eggs alone on the heat and they will be lumpy and end up more like a broken omelette. Stir your eggs constantly – just move them around the pan so they cook slowly. This will make for an exceptionally smooth and creamy scramble.
  • Melt a little butter in the pan first to keep the eggs from sticking.
  • Season the eggs just before you finish cooking them. It’s also a good idea to take your eggs off the heat just before they are completely cooked – they will continue to cook for a little while after, so this prevents them drying out.

Try adding some flavourful additions to your scramble like finely chopped tomato, shredded basil, grated parmesan or fresh chilli and coriander. Serve with sliced avocado and fresh sourdough.

Poached Eggs

Poached eggs shouldn’t be a matter of crossing your fingers and hoping for the best, once you’ve mastered these simple steps you’ll be a poached egg pro in no time…

  • Use a large pan. Small saucepans may heat up your water a little quicker, but there is less room for your eggs to move around and this will muddy your water with floating egg whites and foam so go for a big pan and half fill it. (Use boiling water from the kettle to speed things up.)
  • Add 1 tbsp of white wine vinegar to your water. This helps to keep your eggs together instead of spreading out and floating around in all directions!
  • Bring your water to the boil but then reduce it to a simmer before you add your eggs. You want the eggs to begin cooking when they hit the water but if the water is too hot then they won’t cook correctly – you may end up with a hard yolk and a runny white.
  • Check your eggs after two minutes, they should be soft to touch but not slimy. Don’t check them every 30 seconds because you’ll likely break the egg. Season immediately and serve.
  • Some chefs suggest stirring the water first before adding the eggs to help them keep their round shape but I have never found this necessary. However, it’s worth giving it a go if your eggs are losing their shape and you’ve tried all the steps above!

Hopefully, these tips will help you on your way to cooking eggs to perfection every time.

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