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How to Perfectly Hard-boil an Egg

Jun 2nd, 2017

If you’re only going to have one skill in the kitchen, boiling eggs is a good one to choose. This universal breakfast food is highly versatile. Eggs are also an affordable source of high-quality protein and nutrients like selenium, copper, iron, zinc, and vitamins D, B6, and B12. If you’ve never really tried to prepare an egg and are unsure where to start, hard-boiled eggs are an easy option that pair splendidly with most breakfast spreads. For first-rate hard-boiled eggs in your apartment kitchen, follow these fail-proof tips that won’t let you down.

Know your aim

Your ideal hard-boiled egg may not be your roommate’s ideal. But chances are that neither of you finds a ready-to-eat egg with that gray-green ring around the yolk appetizing. That’s a product of over-boiling, and it’s easy to avoid.

Some people prefer their hard-boiled eggs on the softer side, some on the harder side, and others somewhere between these two, at a consistency Goldilocks might describe as “just right.” Know what consistency or the degree of done you’re going for before you start boiling.

Boil mindfully, and with a timer

You don’t need any special equipment to perfectly boil an egg. A saucepan, large spoon, and fresh eggs can do the trick. The first step is to gently lay the eggs at the base of the saucepan. Then, fill the pan with cool water until it rises roughly an inch above the eggs’ surface. Cover the pan, and bring the water to a boil. Once the water starts boiling, set a timer for five minutes, seven minutes, or nine minutes. After five minutes, the eggs should be slightly soft-boiled, with a custard-like yolk. At about seven minutes, they should be firm yet still slightly creamy. Boil the eggs for nine minutes, and they should be firm but not over done.

If boiling more than six eggs at once, add two minutes to the cooking times suggested above.

Checking on your eggs

Boiling eggs is easy and can feel routine after just a couple goes. Still, you might face a time when you really want to know how the egg yolks will be without having to crack open the egg. The best way to determine whether an egg is boiled enough is to stick it with an instant-read thermometer. If the yolk’s temperature is between 158 and 170 degrees, your eggs should be ready.

Cooling hard-boiled eggs

In order to keep eggs from boiling further after removing them from the burner, run then under cool water. The shells should feel cool to the touch after just a few seconds. At this point, the egg yolks should be as firm as they’ll get unless you reheat them.

Creativity with hard-boiled eggs

As mentioned above, a simple boiled egg is a nice addition to just about any breakfast. But if you ever get bored of eating plain hard-boiled eggs and find yourself with a surplus, there are several easy way to transform their appearance and taste. Ideas from this Real Simple article include deviled eggs, English muffin egg pizzas, and egg salad tea sandwiches.

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