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Tuesday, April 5, 2011


A perfectly boiled, peeled egg!
My son called and said "Mom, how do you boil eggs so they don't crack?"  That was last Easter...he and the girls were continuing the time-honored tradition of decorating and dying Easter eggs.  It sucks when you do a big pot of them and several are cracked!

My sweet high school friend, Wanda, posted on FB that she was having trouble peeling her boiled eggs and was doing a shout out to her FB friends for solutions.

My reply actually solves both of the problems above.  My way has never resulted in a cracked Easter egg shell, makes for the easiest peeling, AND the yolk does not have the "greenish-gray" ring around it when you open it to eat it. (that's apparently caused from over-cooking the boiled egg - see this link for explanation)

No grayish-green circle around my egg yolks!
People say "what's the big's a boiled egg", BUT if you don't know...then you don't know!  I didn't learn this trick until I was in my late 30s.  I endured cracked eggs (made lots of egg salad at Easter) and ugly deviled eggs from having the gray-green circle around the yolk as well as gouged out whites.  So... I'm gonna do a post on boiled eggs.  If you already know...well, then you don't need to read it :-)

So, I almost always have two cartons of eggs in my fridge.  One, you will notice has an older expiration date than the other.  Boiled eggs are easier to peel when they are older - nearest their expiration date.  It's true!  They taste fine, I've actually gone beyond expiration date, and no problemo.  Apparently, from my limited understanding of the science behind this, is that eggs, as they age, they get more of a little air bubble in their innards and the ph balance is slightly higher which causes an effect on the membrane.  So, for boiled eggs - slightly old is better than fresh.  I found a blog that referenced a book which explains it all.  If you want to know more, link here.  I don't have to know more...I just know it's true.

I use the older eggs for boiling and the freshest eggs for baking.  My son takes boiled eggs in his lunch a couple of times each I boil enough for the week and get them real dry, and put two of them in a snack size Ziploc.  Store in fridge and they are ready for lunches and anything I might need them for as well.  I used to do this when I lived in Austin too.  My older son remembers me bagging up a bunch and putting them in the fridge for snacking.  He would ask "why did you boil all these eggs?"  I said, "If I boil them, they will get eaten"...sure enough, I'd see people in the house grabbing boiled eggs for snacks or for a quick meal in the morning or lunch as they rushed out the door.  I also saved all those little salt and pepper packets that come with food service packaging - kept them in a little bowl so folks could grab their seasoning of choice to go with their boiled eggs.  It's better than them grabbing a candy bar, that's all I can say.

Okey dokey - back to the "how to" part....since I've said more than you likely want to hear about the "why" part!

  • Step 1 - have eggs that are at least a week to 10 days old.
  • Step 2 - fill a sauce pan halfway with cold water and gently place the eggs in the pan in a single layer
  • Step 3 - put on stove and turn on high heat - bring eggs to a boil
  • Step 4 - as soon as they are at a boil, put a lid on the pan, and immediately remove from heat
  • Step 5 - set timer for 15 minutes (18 minutes if you use extra-large eggs...I always use large eggs)
  • Step 6 - after the timer dings, drain the hot water from the pan and refill the pan with cold water
  • Step 7 - add a lot of ice cubes to the water
  • Step 8 - set a timer for 15 minutes
  • Step 9 - after the timer dings, drain the cold water from the pan
  • Step 10 - gently shake the eggs in the pan to crack the shells - don't be vigorous or it will crack the egg white inside the shell - you want a lot of little cracks
  • Step 11 - turn on a slow stream of cold water at the tap and peel the eggs under the water...allow the stream of water to separate the boiled egg white from the shell.
  • Step 12 - have paper toweling or a clean cloth ready for the eggs to dry on
  • Step 13 - place in Ziploc bags or covered storage container and place in refrigerator
These will last about one week in the refrigerator (unless you are in my house and then you are lucky to make it a couple of days before they are all eaten!)

Obviously, if you are doing Easter eggs, stop at the end of step 9 and gently dry eggs and refrigerate, either in original egg carton or in a bowl until you are ready to dye them...might layer the eggs with some paper toweling to prevent them cracking against each other if you are using a bowl.  Remove from fridge about an hour before dying so the eggs are not so cold that they get condensation on them when the kids are trying to decorate the egg shell with waxy crayons!  The wax doesn't stick very well when the shell is wet.

I love deviled eggs, egg salad, tuna salad with boiled eggs, potato salad with boiled egg, diced or sliced boiled eggs on a salad, and just eating a boiled egg out of hand with a bit of salt on it.  Yum... didn't the egg council have a commercial that said "the incredible, edible egg!"  I certainly concur :-)


1 comment:

  1. Thanks! I think I will share this on my blog!


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