Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs

Apparently, this is Julia Child's method:
  1. Lay the eggs in the pan and add the amount of cold water specified. Set over high heat and bring just to the boil; remove from heat, cover the pan, and let sit exactly 17 minutes.
  2. When the time is up, transfer the eggs to the bowl of ice cubes and water. Chill for 2 minutes while bringing the cooking water to the boil again. (This 2 minute chilling shrinks the body of the egg from the shell.)
  3. Transfer the eggs (6 at a time only) to the boiling water, bring to the boil again, and let boil for 10 seconds - this expands the shell from the egg. Remove eggs, and place back into the ice water.

Chilling the eggs promptly after each step prevents that dark line from forming, and if time allows, leave the eggs in the ice water after the last step for 15 to 20 minutes. Chilled eggs are easier to peel, as well.

The peeled eggs will keep perfectly in the refrigerator, submerged in water in an uncovered container, for 2 to 3 days.

NOTES : The perfect hard boiled egg has a tender white, and a yolk properly set. There is not the faintest darkening of yolk where the white encircles it (a chemical reaction caused by too much heat in the cooking process). Eggs cooked this way can also be peeled neatly.

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