The Game-Changing Guide to Making Perfect Eggs (With Recipes)!

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how to cook eggs 3Put down the Joy of Cooking and repeat after us: I can make the perfect egg.

Sure, you may have ruined your fair share by cracking an egg meant to be over-easy, only to watch the yolk break all over the pan, or scalding the remains of a scramble until it's permanently fused with your (once non-stick) pan.

But George Weld and Evan Hanczor, founders of Brooklyn's always-packed Egg restaurant, and the authors of the new book, Breakfast: how to cook eggsRecipes to Wake Up For, are here to help with some easy, life-changing, egg-making tips.

"When I started Egg, I didn’t want anything to be exotic, but within that I wanted to surprise people with how beautiful and delicious eggs could be," says Weld about his intentions for the Williamsburg hotspot.

Ready to test his theory? Here are four recipes and tips that will have you looking at the perfect breakfast (okay, or lunch or dinner) food in a whole new light—and help you become a master at cooking scrambled, poached, over easy, and hard boiled eggs. Finally. —Molly Gallagher

(Photo: Breakfast: Recipes to Wake Up For)


TRC98-11-14 P001-208 175L CTP.inddScrambled

Key takeaway: Scramble the eggs directly in the pan. Repeat: Do not use a bowl to scramble your eggs! Also, you must use whole-fat, plain, butter. It's kind of the law.

"It sounds so simple, but using whole butter to cook your eggs makes an enormous difference," Weld says. "Unlike olive oil, for example, it still has a lot of water in it, and that water turns to steam, which helps fluff them up."

These recipes are involved—but when you're done, you'll have every single detail you'll ever need to master these must-have dishes, once and for all.


2 tsp unsalted butter
4 eggs, cracked into a bowl
Kosher salt

Heat an 8-inch nonstick pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot enough to melt butter, but not hot enough to brown it, add the butter. Add the 4 eggs and a pinch of salt before the butter is fully melted—you want some of the water from the butter to mix in with your egg to help inflate them with steam. Poke the eggs with a spatula to break the yolk before the whites begin to set. If the whites begin to set immediately on hitting the pan, remove the pan from heat. Stir the eggs with a silicone or wooden spatula and mix until they're uniformly blended.

Keep an eye on the eggs, stirring them as they begin to set around the edges. Be especially vigilant once the eggs have nearly all set: When you see only traces of liquid egg on the bottom of the pan as you stir, remove the pan from heat, stir the eggs one more time, and turn them out onto a plate to serve immediately.

You don’t need to stir constantly to get good eggs. Stir them enough to keep them from setting too hard in any one place. If they start to set, break them up. Then you can leave them alone until they seem ready to set again. Turn them out of the pan when they’re just still glossy and wet—they’ll cook another degree or two off the heat.

Text/photos excerpted from BREAKFAST: Recipes to Wake Up For © 2015 by George Weld and Evan Hanczor. Reproduced by permission of Rizzoli New York. All rights reserved.


how to cook eggs 2Over Easy

Key Takeaway: Don't overheat the pan. And learn to flip your eggs. (Then prepare to impress your brunch guests.)

"If the egg sizzles when it hits the pan, the pan is too hot," Weld says. "You also have to flip the eggs, which is a real skill. To learn how to do it, just practice flipping a piece of bread on your frying pan so you can learn the motion."

2 eggs
1 tsp clarified butter
Kosher salt
Black pepper

Crack 2 eggs into a shallow dish.

Heat a teaspoon of clarified butter in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Slip the eggs into the pan gently. If they sizzle, turn the heat down immediately or remove the pan from heat. You want the whites to set gently in the heat, not fry and sputter.

Once the outer white is fully set and remaining white just opaque, gently shake the pan to make sure the eggs are loose from the bottom. Jiggle and shake the pan until the 2 yolks are in a line at right angles to the handle of the pan (if the pan is a face and the yolks are the eyes, the handle should be the neck).

Now comes the fun part. To flip eggs,  move your hand in a rapid, vertical circle, like a Ferris wheel. Holding the pan in the air, push it away from you in a slight downward arc, like you’re passing through the bottom of a loop-de-loop. As the pan starts to come up again from its low point in the loop, give it the slightest flick, as though you’re just letting the eggs know it’s okay for them to take flight. This flick is also what sets the eggs into rotation so that they come down on the raw side. Let them cook for another 20-30 seconds, or until the white surrounding the yolk is completely set.

Text/photos excerpted from BREAKFAST: Recipes to Wake Up For © 2015 by George Weld and Evan Hanczor. Reproduced by permission of Rizzoli New York. All rights reserved.


how to cook eggs 1Poached

Key Takeaways: Crack them in a bowl or cup beforehand—and add lemon juice or vinegar to the pot.

"A little vinegar or lemon juice will help pull the eggs together and will make them less slippery once they hit the plate," Weld says. "And cracking the eggs in a bowl or cup beforehand gives you a chance to pull out any shells and makes its entry into the water more gentle."

2 fresh eggs (in poaching, the fresher the better)
2 tsp apple cider vinegar or any other good-tasting, light-colored vinegar such as white wine or rice wine
1 quart water
Kosher salt
Black pepper

Crack the eggs into two individual cups. Bring 1 quart of water to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a high simmer. Add vinegar. Lower the edge of the cup to just above the surface of the water and slip the egg in. Let the eggs set for a few seconds before taking the edge of a slotted spoon and scraping it across the bottom of the pot to make sure the eggs didn’t stick. If they’re floating free, just let them cook gently in a simmering pot for 3 minutes.

Remove the eggs one at a time with a slotted spoon, being careful to let all the water drain back into the pot. Check the egg for doneness: You should be able to see a well-formed orb of liquid yolk set into a gently-set disk of white. (Sometimes the inner white won’t set fully and it will make the center of the egg look a little bulbous—if that’s the way your egg looks, just slide it back into the water for a 20–30 seconds.)

Once your eggs are done, slide each one onto a plate and pull away any unsightly scraps with your fingers. If any water puddles around the egg, you can either pour it off or sop it up with a paper towel. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Text/photos excerpted from BREAKFAST: Recipes to Wake Up For © 2015 by George Weld and Evan Hanczor. Reproduced by permission of Rizzoli New York. All rights reserved.


how to cook eggs 4Hard Boiled

Key Takeaway: Poke the eggs first.

"Poking the back of the eggs before they go in the water tends to make them peel better," Weld says, who also adds that the ice bath is as equally important.

2 eggs, ends pricked with a thumbtack

Put your eggs in a 1 quart pot with just enough water to cover them. Quickly bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as the water boils, gently stir the eggs once and take them off heat (stirring helps keep the yolk from settling on one side of the egg).

Leave the eggs in the hot water and start a timer.

The times you want are:

Soft-boiled: 3 minutes
Medium-boiled: 6 minutes
Hard-boiled: 10 minutes

As soon as the timer goes off, dump out the eggs and rinse with cold water (if you’re making hard-boiled eggs, plunge them into an ice bath). Serve soft- and medium boiled eggs in egg cups with toast, if you like—just cut off the tops of the eggs so that you can eat them right out of the shell.

With hard-boiled eggs, you can either peel them right away (it’s easiest to peel them while they’re still in the ice bath before they’re completely cooled), or you can store them in their shells for 5 days.

Text/photos excerpted from BREAKFAST: Recipes to Wake Up For © 2015 by George Weld and Evan Hanczor. Reproduced by permission of Rizzoli New York. All rights reserved.


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