Boiled eggs are one of the quickest ways to make your eggs if you want to eat up fast. They seem simple enough, but for some reason, many people still find them difficult to perfect. It is frustrating when you find wisps of white foam in the boiling water, indicating a cracked egg--so how do you avoid it? We've researched cooking methods for the perfect boiled egg.
Here is what you can do to prevent your eggs from cracking while boiling:
- Use the right pot. It should have enough space between the eggs.
- The water should cover the egg by 1/2-inch.
- Start by putting the egg in cool water; then, bring to a boil.
- At near boiling point, lower the heat and let simmer for 10-12 more minutes.
- Mix a small amount of vinegar and salt in the water to help the egg cook more quickly.
Eggs are a highly versatile dish, and there are other ways you can enjoy them. If you want to learn more about different ways to properly cook your eggs, keep reading below!
How To Prevent Eggs From Cracking While Boiling
Making the perfect hard-boiled eggs depends on the temperature, cook time, water level, and how you control all these factors. How you cook them will also determine whether they will crack or not.
Here is how you can cook your hard-boiled eggs effectively.
Use the right pot for space between the eggs
Cramming too many eggs into one pot will cause them to bump into each other and crack as the water boils. It will also make some eggs undercooked. There should be adequate space between the eggs, so they do not crack while moving around.
The water should cover the egg by 1/2-inch
The egg should at least float an inch above the saucepan, so the water needs to cover the egg by 1/2-inch. This will ensure that the egg does not bang against the pot while the air moves it around while boiling.
Start by putting the egg in cool water; then, bring to a boil
One mistake people often make is adding the eggs to the water only when the water starts to boil. The sudden heat will cause the eggs to crack, and it will not cook all the way through. Always let it sit in the cold water first, covered, and let the eggs' and water temperature rise simulatneously.
At near boiling point, lower the heat and let simmer for 10-12 more minutes
When the water starts to boil, lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes or more. The amount of time you let it sit depends on how you want it cooked.
If you want a perfectly hard-boiled egg, leave the egg for another 3-4 minutes. You can also turn off the stove completely and let the covered eggs sit in steaming water for another 5-10 minutes.
Mix a small amount of vinegar and salt in the water to help the egg cook more quickly
Before boiling, add a teaspoon of vinegar and salt to the water. Vinegar will help the egg set more quickly, so even if it cracks, it will prevent the egg whites from spilling.
Salt also increases the temperature of the water to help the egg cook faster on top of preventing cracking.
How To Peel Hard Boiled Eggs
One of the frustrating things that can happen when peeling eggs is when part of the egg white embeds itself on the shell, breaking the egg. Luckily, there are ways that we can peel hard-boiled eggs more easily.
Here is how you can properly peel them.
Give the egg an ice bath
An ice bath shocks the egg into stopping immediately after cooking. This will prevent your eggs from being overcooked. This method also separates the egg membrane from the shell, making it easier to peel.
Leave the egg submerged in ice water for 5 minutes for a smooth peel.
How To Check Hard Boiled Egg Doneness
You don't want to peel the egg and suddenly find it still soft and mushy inside. Here are ways to check if your boiled egg is done all the way through.
Spinning the Egg
The egg spin test is the most popular method used by professional cooks since it is the easiest.
- Place the egg on a flat and even surface.
- Hold the egg and spin using your index finger.
- Observe the way it spins. If it spins fast and smooth, it is cooked. If it appears wobbly and slow, it is not yet done.
Eggs that are well-done spin smoothly since the density between the egg white and egg yolk are equal. In contrast, they will spin wobbly if it is not hard-boiled since the egg white and egg yolk have uneven densities.
Shaking the Egg
To make an accurate call, you will need to compare a raw egg with the egg you just boiled. You will also need some practice to determine which eggs are still raw and which ones are well-done.
- Gently shake the egg and feel for any liquid movement.
- If you cannot tell accurately, compare it with a raw egg and weigh your judgment from there.
- If you do not feel any liquid movement, or if it does not have the same weight as the raw egg, it is already cooked.
This is a fairly difficult method, so you may need to resort to another way to check the egg's doneness.
Putting the egg under a light source
This test can determine the doneness of the egg white, but it may not make an accurate call to the yolk since the egg white blocks it.
When light passes through a hard-boiled egg, it should be opaque except around the sides. When light passes through an uncooked egg, you should see the light reflected inside.
Testing with the Thermometer
This may not be the most reliable method since it will depend on the amount of time you let your egg rest, but you can still try it if you are not confident with the spin test.
Hold an infrared thermometer beside the egg. A thermometer that reads 160F means it is probably done.
Egg bubble test
This is another tried-and-tested method to see if your boiled egg is cooked all the way through, but you will need to observe closely.
Use a transparent bowl to easily observe what happens under the eggs.
- Place the egg in warm water.
- Look closely underneath the egg.
- Observe if there are tiny bubbles being released. If there are bubbles, it is not yet cooked.
Different ways to boil an egg
Off course, it will not matter how well you boil an egg if it did not come out the way you wanted. There are other ways you can cook an egg that will fit your cuisine, although some require more attention than others.
Hard-boiled eggs need to be cooked from a low temperature, gradually going to a boiling point, then simmering down for 10-12 minutes. After 15 minutes, it should be cooked all the way through, with the egg yolk solid and opaque.
You can refrigerate a hard-boiled egg, leave it for around two hours, chop them up and mix them with your salad.
Soft-boiled eggs are cooked in the same method as hard-boiled eggs, except you will let them simmer for only 6 minutes instead of 12. Be sure to bring the soft-boiled eggs into an ice bath first so you can peel them easily without spilling the contents.
Soft-boiled eggs are best paired with ramen noodles and avocado toast.
This is a more complicated way to cook an egg, mainly because you will need practice and a certain amount of finesse to pull it off. Poached eggs are just like boiling an egg but without the shell to hold the membrane.
The methods to poach eggs vary, but here is one that is commonly used.
- Bring water to a boil, then lower the heat once it reaches the boiling point.
- Crack the egg into a cup to make it easier to control.
- Stir the water until it turns into a whirlpool.
- Drop the egg into the swirling water. The movement will make the egg membrane wrap and stick around itself.
- Cook in low heat for 2 to 3 minutes, then scoop with a deep spoon.
Take note that using this method, you should only poach one egg.
Eggs are healthy and easier to cook compared to other meals that require rigorous preparation. However, it can take some time before you can fully perfect cooking different types of eggs.
Keep practicing and applying practical tips to perfect your skills!