One of the secrets of our relationship success is shared values.
I must confess we don’t agree on everything, though.
We eat a lot of eggs. I mean, a lot. We frequently keep hard-boiled eggs on hand for a quick boost on busy days. Transit days come to mind. And on long riding days when we’re nowhere near a restaurant, hard-boiled eggs travel well in our panniers and give us a big bang for the buck to keep us rolling.
The catch is that I like mine more done—light and fluffy, well-cooked yolks. He likes his—well—more raw and gooey. Maybe it’s his British heritage. We’ll cut him some slack on that. Can’t be helped.
We’ve refined our system over time and now have a solid compromise. It’s easy enough to make both in the same batch. You simply remove some to the ice bath earlier in the cooking process. Slap a Sharpie number on them to distinguish the different “doneness” in minutes and Bob’s your uncle. Everyone wins.
Skinning the cat
There are a lot of hard-boiled egg methods out there and we’ve experimented with many of them over the years—how long to cook them, to ice bath or not to ice bath, when to put them in the water, etc. We’ve settled into a method that has become fool-proof for our “eggsistance,” especially in the trailer. The process is a sort of assembly line that’s workable in a small space—moving from right (where the stove is) to middle (ice bath) to left (where they get their Sharpie label in the carton).
Here’s our go-to method for egg bliss:
- Bring the water to a boil.
- Gently add the eggs.
- At the 10-minute mark (or your desired doneness), remove the batch you want less done and place in the ice bath.
- Take a dance break while the remaining eggs cook for another four minutes. I recommend Can’t Stop the Feeling (Justin Timberlake), You Sexy Thing (Hot Chocolate), or Let’s Dance (David Bowie) to really get your groove on.
- Right before you need to remove the second batch from the boiling water, transfer the first batch from the ice bath to dry.
- Move the last batch of eggs from the pot to the ice bath.
- Dry and label the first batch with a Sharpie while the second batch cools so they don’t get mixed up.
- Dry and label the second batch when they’re done cooling to your satisfaction.
- Boom, you’re done. Pour yourself a Manhattan.
We’ve found the ice bath to be crucial in preventing the green rim on the yolks as well as for peel-ability. Because we don’t have much ice on hand in our microscopic RV freezer, we don’t replenish the ice in between batches. That means the 10-minute eggs get the better of the ice bath but for a shorter time and the 14s end up with more of a “cool” bath but for longer. It works, though, and that method doesn’t deplete our meager ice supply before happy hour begins. We have priorities, after all.
It seems so laughably basic now but it took awhile to develop the system to the well-honed steps that work perfectly for us in our small space. And we both get the eggs we like, no muss no fuss.
Is it happy hour yet?
We have a similar egg division..I love eggs in any form, Nancy does not. This might be related to my tendency to refer to eggs as “fetal chickens”. At any rate…more for me!
Hahaha! You sure know how to market them, Lou. And the funny thing is that we’re the opposite on fried eggs. I like those runny and gooey and he likes his more cooked. Go fig.
Keith A Duggan
Dan only wants hard boiled eggs about once a quarter, i like them once or twice a week. Like y’all, i use them as a go to when i’m eating on the run.
i’ve come to realize that he really only likes slightly undercooked (to my perspective) scrambled eggs. i want mine fried most of the time.
Thank you for doing the research on cooling.
Yeah, we love having them on hand. It makes such a difference when we need a quick pick-me-up. It works out that we both enjoy eggs equally.
The cooling seems to work well. Not sure of the mechanism behind that but we’re just going with it.