Basic ways of cooking eggs

Eggs are a healthy and versatile food to cook, you can enjoy them in a multitude of ways. They are a great addition to your diet for their protein and nutriments. Learning to cook eggs is a great start for learning how to cook in general. The process is simple but can yield better results the more experience and knowledge you have with cooking. Often chefs might test a trainee’s ability to cook on how they cook scrambled egg for instance. This guide introduces all the major ways to cook eggs and hopefully will help novice cooks to get started with something simple and nutritious to enjoy.

Boiled Egg

boiledeggs

There’s two ways to enjoy a boiled egg, soft or hard boiled. The difference between the two comes down to personal taste, time and slight health differences. Soft boiled eggs aren’t recommended for the very young, peopled with weakened immune systems or the elderly because of the risk of salmonella. Personally I prefer the hard-boiled egg because of the versatility of dishes you can use it with.

For soft boiled eggs, you just boil the egg in water for 2-4 minutes.

For hard boiled eggs, again just boiling the egg in water, but for 12-15 minutes.

Once you’ve cooked the egg you need to peel the shell, use a sieve to cool the egg under cold water. Use a paper towel, and slightly knock the egg around on all sides. This will loosen up the egg shell, to further loosen it, roll it around in your hand until you feel the shell all cracked up. You can then break the shell off. Wash the egg a bit there’s shell still on it. You can then cut or keep the egg in its shape and serve with whatever else you fancy.

Scrambled Egg

scrambled eggs

Scrambled egg is a common favorite, but often badly cooked which results in a messy pot which is hard to wash. The key here is the heat at which you cook the eggs, and realising that you don’t need to constantly have the pot over the heat, the egg keeps cooking whilst off the heat.

There are a few different methods of cooking scrambled egg, and people can personalize their own preparation to suit their preference.  I’ll just explain my own method which results in a fluffy scrambled egg that isn’t too dry or wet.

First beat the desired amount of eggs for how many you need to server, generally 1-2 eggs per person. Grease a pan with butter and heat it up high. Pour in the eggs and turn the heat down. The eggs will begin to curd quickly. You need to keep stirring the eggs constantly to stop them from cooking too quickly and sticking to the pan. Once the eggs are almost solid, add in 1/2 – 1 cup of milk into the eggs and keep stirring. The technique to use is to take the pan off the heat periodically and keep stirring. Once the milk isn’t seeping out from the eggs anymore and has combined well, you can turn off the heat, keep stirring for a moment after, the eggs will still be cooking after the heat is taken off. At this point you can stir in a few flakes of coriander and salt and pepper to add a bit more flavor. Serve with your preferred accompaniment, eggs on toast is a general favorite.

Fried Egg

friedeggs

Fried eggs are probably the easiest way to cook eggs but the unhealthiest because of the oil it needs to be cooked in, of course you can use low fat spray oil to help reduce the amount of fat.

Frying eggs is something that is seen as incredibly basic, but again there a lot of skill in cooking the perfect fried egg, especially in terms of presentation.

First you want to get the pan hot without anything in, so heat a pan for about a minute on high heat. Then you can have the choice of butter, olive oil or spray oil depending on how much fat you care about and how much more crispy and tasty you want it.

Crack out the egg into the hot oil and turn the heat down. Now there are few ways of cooking the fried egg based on whether you prefer it hard or soft, you can cook it either side by flipping it, spoon some oil onto the top for the classic basted egg or pour in half a tablespoon of water and cover the pan to steam the egg for a soft fried egg.

The best finishing touch is of course a generous grinding of salt and pepper over the egg.

Poached Egg

poached eggs

Poaching an egg, is basically cooking it in boiling water. Another healthy way of eating eggs because of the lack of cooking oil.

You drop it into water which is almost at the boil. Make a small whirlpool with a spoon before you drop in the egg. It takes about 4 minutes to cook if you want it quite soft. Lift the egg out with a slotted spoon, and let it dry on some kitchen towel. Enjoy with whatever else you want, the preferred way is on toast.

Omelet

omelet

For a medium omelet, you want about 2 eggs.  Beat the eggs first in a bowl, and add 2 tbsp of milk and salt/pepper to taste. Get your pan hot first and then melt some butter in it. When the butter is hot, pour in the egg mixture. Leave it to cook for around 1 minute, before you disturb it. Tilt the egg with a spatula until it cooks solid, and no liquid is left, you should be left with a yellow looking pancake, and flip it over once or twice to make sure it’s all cooked.

Now is the time to add your omelet filling if you want, you can literally add anything you like to an omelet, but a favorite is ham and cheese. Spoon the filling down the center of the egg in a line.

Now flip over one side of the egg so it seals up over the filling, forming a pouch, and cook it a little longer, making sure it doesn’t go brown, flipping it over if need be, and serve after a minute or two of cooking the filling.

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