Egg Poaching 101

16 08 2008

I’ve been cooking, to a greater and lesser degree, for over 40 years now, and never have I heard any egg poaching recipes that explain the process the way Smitten Kitchen does.  I’m sure it’s not the 100% recommended-pass-your-CIA-academy method, but this one WORKS, and that’s enough for me for now. Click on her blog title to go to her tutorial.

After reading through the instructions twice and pouring over her photographs, I discovered I really wanted to give this  try.  Really.  Badly.  Enough to make eggs benedict bad.  Well…at least my version du jour.  I started with whole sprouted grain english muffins, sliced ham, fake hollandaise (had to appreciate my limitations at that moment) and a carton of eggs.

I’ve poached eggs, and faux poached eggs, and given up on poached eggs for ages.  No matter what I do, the eggs have always become webby in the water and I end up with a bunch of white webs and froth and a lonely little yolk with a bit of white on the edges.  Why bother??  Back to the sauté pan.  Deb’s method keeps the white nicely attached to the yolk so you end with all the egg in the center of your pan.  That’s the give-away that this isn’t a major chef technique…surely they don’t poach each egg singly in a pan…or do they??  Gordon Ramsey…please stand up!

The upshot is I didn’t take pictures…the card was still in the computer from my last photo editing session, but the eggs came out fabulously: tender, white orbs full of runny yellow goodness.  Don’t worry.  I’m sure I’ll be poaching again soon.  Hubster loves eggs benedict.  That’s one reason I keep faux hollandaise available.  Once in awhile there are just enough eggs for the plate, but too few for hollandaise!  I held the first 2 eggs in a buttered bowl while I cooked the 2nd plate of eggs.  I dropped the first two back into the water just before the 2nd batch came out so they’d reheat.  And the pan isn’t a huge mess from the egg dispersing into the water.  Deb…I owe you one for this!!