You will be able to make eggs that are perfectly cooked in both the soft-boil and hard-boil styles, and I believe that my approach is quite foolproof.
When you want hard-boiled eggs, you put the eggs in a pot with cold water and bring that to a boil; however, when you want soft-boiled eggs, you put the eggs in a pot with hot water. This can be pretty confusing, and it makes it difficult to cook both soft-boiled and hard-boiled eggs at the same time. As a result, I’m going to teach my approach to you today, and I should warn you that it’s the same for both options. Not only is it incredibly simple to do, but it also protects you from inadvertently overcooking your eggs, avoiding the appearance of a bluish-green ring around the center of the yolk.
The rate at which pots made of aluminum, stainless steel, and cast iron come to a boil and the amount of heat they retain can vary quite a bit depending on the material. And I’ve found that those differences can have a significant impact on how your eggs turn out, particularly when it comes to making eggs with a runny center or mistakenly overcooking eggs that are supposed to be hard-boiled. Because of this, whenever I make eggs, I always start by bringing the water to a boil first.
The pot I’m using today is made of stainless steel, but once the water has been brought to a boil, it doesn’t make a difference what kind of pot you use. Put enough water into your saucepan so that it will cover the eggs by about an inch all the way around, then bring the water to a boil. Take the eggs out of the refrigerator while you wait for the water to boil, which will give them a couple of minutes to come to room temperature before using them. It is recommended that you use eggs that are at least a week old in order to make peeling them simpler; however, I am not typically very good at preparing ahead of time.
Your next step is to get ready an icy, cold water bath for your eggs, since this is what will quickly stop the cooking process and keep the texture that you want to achieve. Since the water in our pot is already boiling, it is safe to add the eggs at this point. While you are adding the eggs, turn the heat down to a low setting. This will prevent the eggs from bouncing around and cracking as they are added. However, you can crank up the temperature after you’ve finished putting in all of the ingredients. The skimmer I have is made of stainless steel, and it makes it so much simpler for me to both put eggs in the pot and take them out again. After the eggs have been put into the water, I set a timer to begin counting down. And because I’m going to show you different kinds of eggs today, I’m going to take them out of the water after six, eight, ten, twelve, and fourteen minutes, which covers a very wide range of soft-boiled and hard-boiled eggs.
Now, so that the eggs don’t end up in a jumbled mess, I’m going to write the amount of time they were cooked on the shells, but only after they’ve had a minute to chill in the ice water bath.
When it comes to removing the shell and peeling the egg, I’ve found that it’s easier to begin at the thick end of the egg and work my way toward the thin end. It is simpler to get under the membrane that separates the shell from the egg when you start at this end of the egg since there is typically a small air bubble there. In addition to this, it is helpful to run the egg under cold water while you are peeling it.
Alright, let’s cut these eggs open and examine their contents to see how they turned out. The first egg is our six-minute egg, and it should have a liquidy yolk but the whites should be fairly cooked. It should be quite soft. The yolk of our egg that was cooked for eight minutes will still be mushy, but it will no longer be runny or sticky. When it comes to what I’d consider to be hard-boiled eggs, our 10 minute egg is the softest of the bunch, and the yolk still has a touch of runniness to it. When I make hard-boiled eggs, I almost always cook them for 12 minutes, which results in a somewhat more solid egg with a paler yolk. This is the length at which I cook them the most often. Last but not least, we have what is known as a typical hard-boiled egg that takes 14 minutes to cook. This egg has the lightest yolk and the firmest white, but it is not overcooked, and there is no trace of green surrounding the yolk.
Once you have the hang of cooking eggs in this manner, you are free to experiment with other times until you find one that you prefer. You may simply prepare a variety of eggs for the complete family by starting all of the eggs at the same time in boiling water. This will allow you to cook eggs in six, eight, 10, 12, and 14 minute increments respectively. If I’m going to serve soft-boiled eggs in an egg cup, I’ll make them for six minutes, but as you guys already know from watching the meal prep video I posted, my personal preference is for six and a half minute eggs, which are soft but have a slightly jammy consistency, and I like to use them to top toast and salads.
Here you can find a table with different times to get different results:
- 6 minutes – Soft boiled, liquidy yolk inside.
- 6.5 minutess – Soft boiled liquidy yolk and a bit jammy (good for topping toast/salads).
- 8 minutes – Soft, not liquidy but jammy (good for ramen).
- 10 minutes – Medium.
- 12 minutes – Lightly hard boiled.
- 14 minutes – Hard boiled, best for potato/egg salads and deviled eggs.