by Eric Wharton
My Recipe Book, constantly being added to
|My mom used to boil the dickens out of eggs. When she did, I always wondered why there was a grayish ring around the yolks. It wasn't until I was much older and cooking on my own that I found out why. When eggs are overcooked, sulphur from the egg-white reacts with iron from the yolk. It won't hurt you, but it's unappealing.
At one time, people thought eating too many eggs was bad for you. Well, I guess eating 50 at a time like Cool Hand Luke probably is. However, recent research has found that eating eggs raises the good cholesterol and that Federal dietary guidelines no longer warn against them. Even so, it's important to know how to cook them, which most people think is simple enough, hence the problem of the gray ring.
Place eggs in the bottom of a saucepan and place the eggs in a single layer at the bottom. Don't crowd them. Try to have them not touching
Fill until covered by varying amounts of water depending on the number of eggs.
6 eggs or less = I inch of water
7-12 eggs = 2 inches of water
Heat on high and bring to a full rolling boil.
Once the water has begun boiling, turn off heat, cover, and let stand for 11 minutes.
NOTE: some cooks suggest not removing the pan from the burner after turning it off, and others suggest a range from 10-12 minutes depending on altitude, shape of the pan, size of the eggs, and the ratio of water to eggs (The procedure outlined above worked well for 10 medium eggs in a 9-in, 6-qt round saucepan covered by 2 inches of water heated on an electric range at 400 feet above sea level).
Remove eggs from hot water and place in ice-cold bath 4-5 minutes. This will stop them from cooking. Don't leave them in too long, or they will be harder to peel. You want them just slightly warm.
1. Older eggs are easier to peel than fresh eggs. It has to do with the pH level of the egg whites which changes when they age. Eggs bought two weeks before their expiration date, or even one week, will keep and be easier to peel.
2. To make fresh eggs peel easy, steam them for 15 minutes. If you don't have a steamer, steam them in half and inch of water, covered. You can also steam them in a pressure cooker, like an INSTAPOT.
3. Adding 1/2 tsp salt MAY make eggs easier to peel.
4. Peeling them under running water helps to release the membrane.
5. Adding 1 tsp vinegar to water will help prevent egg whites from running out if cracked.
6. Store eggs in a covered container because they can release odors.
7. Don't keep hard-boiled eggs in the refrigerator longer than 5 days.
8. Check for freshness of eggs by watching how much they float. If they flat on their side, they are fresh. If they stay on the bottom of the pan but one end floats upright, they're a little older but still okay to eat, just do so soon. If eggs float to the surface, throw the out. Seriously … get rid of them, they're expired.
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