Oh, good morning my loves.
If you've ever read anything by Anthony Bourdain, watched Hell's Kitchen or MasterChef or even cooked at home for a decent amount of time, you'll know there are some skills that absolutely indispensable to a chef.
BTW - I'm currently (and finally) reading Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential. So true. Restaurants are a dirty, dirty place. And I'm not just talking about the food prep or the accidental blood in your food. I'm talkin about the back rooms, after hours, when the staff have more money (read: drugs, alcohol and libido) than they know what to do with. Seriously. Read this book. You'll either be too grossed out to go out for dinner ever again, or be found in sheer awe of the fact that he's risen to where he is today. If nothing else, it's an enticing and honestly flabbergasting read. Something that should be added to this list from a few months back.
Where were we? Right. Skills. Nay. Skillz!
We must have particular, uh, skillz. Knowing how to hold a knife and dice an onion is one. Another is the difference between saute and steam. Over crowd a pan, you'll steam those expensive yet tasty scallops rather than sear. And another, is knowing how to cook an egg.
Eggs are by far one of the most useful ingredients in our arsenal. With them you can make breakfast in a myriad of forms - scrambled, over-easy, eggs benny, omelet, frittata, pancakes, french toast. You can make lunch in the form of quiche or crepe. Or dinner in your stuffing, place one over polenta and meatballs, souffle or make chicken fried rice. And of course, enjoy in dessert: pot de creme, custards, cakes, flans, tiramisu, cookies. The list is endless. Eggs!
If you're unsure about which eggs to go select, you can disentangle types of eggs here.
Now. One of the best ways, in my opinion, to cook eggs is a simple soft boil. You can throw these babies over a salad, spread on toast or just munch on as a snack.
The key, of course, is timing. Wait 30 seconds too long, you'll end up with hard boiledness suitable only for crushing into an egg salad sandwich. Take them off the heat 30 seconds too early, you'll have goopey whites. One word: Ew.
These are a delicacy and while these guys insist we "put a bird on it", I'm convinced that if we "put an egg on it", we take an otherwise ordinary dish to extraordinary places. Especially if they're cooked the right way.
Soft Boiled Eggs
(printable recipe) - Serves 4.
4 Large Pastured Eggs, room temperature(ish).
Coarse Sea Salt & Fresh Cracked Black Pepper.
What to Do:
Fill a medium sized sauce pan with cold water. Place over high heat. Allow the water to come to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and gently place the room-temp eggs into the water.
Simmer for 3 1/2 - 4 minutes. You will likely have to experiment with your stove once.
Using a slotted spoon, remove from the water and place in an ice water bath immediately to stop the cooking process.
After a few minutes, remove from the ice bath and you can eat them straight from the shell or peel and "put an egg on it"....whatever it happens to be.
Make sure that either way you season with salt and pepper before consuming.
What skills do you think are important to the home chef?
What do you put eggs on? What's your favorite way to eat eggs?