Everyday Hardboiled Eggs

Because not every meal is an adventure.

Adding salt to the water and reducing the heat once the eggs are in the water are key.

Not every meal exists to be thoroughly enjoyed.

I swear it was on Tim Ferris‘s blog that I found this little piece of dietary wisdom. But in a rare case of my Google skills failing me, I can’t find the direct quote, so I’ll paraphrase.

Most meals are every day, routine meals. Like anything routine, they are unexciting, predictable and not new. Realizing and accepting this goes a long way in losing or maintaining weight. The more meals you can make routine, the better your results. You will appreciate non-routine meals more, too. Dinners during the week, for us, are not totally routine, but we have many routine dishes we rotate through.

Breakfast during the week is a routine meal for me. I have the same thing every week. Monday through Friday, I have two hardboiled eggs with either cheese, grapefruit or toast with peanut butter, depending on the day. Why the cheese, grapefruit and toast? That’s another post.

Every Sunday I make 10 eggs for the week. Boiling an egg is not rocket science, but it’s not as straightforward as you might imagine if you’ve never done it.

If your egg cracks while you put it in the pot, you get these bulbous egg growths on your boiled eggs. They don’t affect the taste, but eating them is…yucky. Likewise, if you peel your eggs without preparing them properly, egg peels away too, leaving giant gouges in your eggs. Eating them is likewise yucky. So how do you prevent those two things from happening?

Glad you asked! (If you even read this far.)

Bring a pot of water to boil on high heat. Choose a pot that will fit all your eggs in a single layer. Fill it with enough water such that when the eggs go in, they will be covered with about 1/2 inch to an inch of water.

Once the water is at the boil, salt your water with a couple pinches of salt. This prevents the eggs from cracking when you drop them in. Speaking of which, with a slotted spoon, lower your eggs in carefully. Reduce the heat to medium.

Wait 11 minutes.

Take the eggs off the heat. As quick as you can, run them under cold water. If you want to, place them in a bowl (I never do this, since it dirties another dish). Metal is best, since it will conduct heat away from the eggs. Keep running them under cold water until you can hold the eggs. Why the cold water? It stops the cooking process, so the eggs aren’t overcooked. I was going to add that it helps remove the shell (the egg will contract when it cools, but the shell won’t, so it leaves a gap, allowing the shell to be cracked and removed), but I don’t think that’s true.

Once your eggs are cool to the touch, remove the shell. Bash the top of the egg against a cutting board then the bottom, then the sides. Carefully scrape the shell off egg with your fingers. To cool the eggs completely, put them in the fridge, or outside if it’s winter time and below zero (this is the better option, just remember they’re out there!).

Rapid cooling is the key to peeling the shells of these buggers.

Jason Kemp is a geek trapped in a cool guy's body. He hand crafts software for the web and mobile devices. He excels at user interface design, the deadlift and barbecue. He is @ageektrapped across the internet.

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