Practical Kitchen : Perfect Soft Boiled Eggs

Practical Kitchen : Perfect Soft Boiled Eggs

Practical Kitchen is an article series where I explore all the things I make on a regular basis to keep myself fed when life gets crazy. I hope these articles help you eat better, less stressful weeknight meals.

How to make perfect soft boiled eggs

If it weren't for the presence of soft boiled eggs in the majority of my weeknight meals I would probably have a massive protein problem. I cook very little meat in my apartment, and I rarely have time to mess with it for dinner. That's where the eggs come in. Soft boiled eggs are the perfect addition to grain bowls (which I eat a lot of), and they are very easy to batch cook and store for a couple of days. They reheat well, and the gooey center makes for a wonderful sauce-like flavor when chopped up among a mixture of grains and veggies. 

The question: How to achieve those soft boiled eggs you see all over Instagram every single time? 

Don't worry - after a lot of research (and trial and error), I have the answer. 

The first place I turned to find the secret to custardy soft eggs was The Kitchn. I love reading articles from The Kitchn for their thorough, yet simple how-tos. Their idea of a soft boil egg is one that is eaten almost like a dip, straight from the shell with crispy bread (I believe they call these mouillettes in France or little soldiers). I was looking for something more like a ramen-style egg. One that I could cut in half, but with a jammy center. 

So, I turned to Bon Appétit. Here I found what would become the basis of my method for soft-boiling eggs - 6 1/2 minutes in water boiling over medium-high heat and 2 minutes in an ice bath. 

I looked to Downshiftology for a final bit of information regarding cook time and found a helpful chart regarding egg cook times - very helpful if you don't want your eggs as jammy as some might (like myself). 

Finally, I felt prepared to conquer the soft boiled egg. 

How to make perfect soft boiled eggs

Here's my method for soft-boiling perfect eggs: 

(For reference, I like to cook my eggs 6 at a time.)

  1. Begin by boiling 10 cups of water over medium high meat. I have an electric coil stove at my apartment, and I usually let my water boil at the 8 setting. When you put your water on to boil, set your eggs out on the counter. I would recommend boiling no more than 6 eggs at a time using this method. 

  2. After the water has come to a boil, gently settle each egg into the water. Let cook for 6 1/2 minutes. Make sure to use a timer! 

  3. While your eggs are cooking, prepare an ice bath. Make sure you have room in the bath for each egg to be submerged in the ice water. 

  4. When 6/12 minutes has passed place each egg in the ice bath and allow them to soak for 2 minutes. Remove and crack promptly, beginning by cracking the bottom of the egg where the air bubble is. I find it helps to crack the eggs all over before I begin peeling. 

Eggs can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days, peeled, in an airtight container. 

This method works for me because I often meal prep for three night during the week! The eggs reheat nicely in the covered microwave in about 1 minute. I hope you find this helpful! Feel free to leave thoughts or questions in the comments below!

Until we eat again -

Jodi

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