How to boil the perfect egg

The Secret to Perfectly Boiled Eggs…

This is a simple trick we learned from a chef that is a definite never fail which enables you to cook perfect eggs whether you need runny yolks for dipping or hard yolks for salads.

The fail-safe method:

This method assumes you will use large cold eggs straight from the fridge – if your eggs are smaller just take the time down a little.

+ Place cold eggs into a heavy bottom saucepan – choose the right size for the number of eggs – snug but not tight, and nor too big so eggs are banging around. Cover with cold water plus around 3cm above the eggs.

+ Bring to the boil and switch off the heat. Keep eggs in the hot water for your chosen length of time – see table below. The heat from the water will gently bring the eggs to perfection! Then run under cold water to cool, and stop them from cooking further.

Obviously if your eggs are room temperature or if you are lucky straight from the nest you will need to reduce the time but by using the same pan and same size eggs each time (and therefore controlling all the variables) you will soon become an expert!

How do you like your yolk?
  • 2 minutes– The white isn’t fully set and the yolk is totally raw.
  • 4 minutes– The white is fully set, but the yolk is thick and runny.
  • 6 minutes– The white is fully set, and the yolk is mostly set, but still a little runny in the middle.
  • 8 minutes– The white is fully set, and the yolk is set, but tender.
  • 10 minutes– The white is fully set, and the yolk is fully set.


Images and instructions by Samantha Mackie.

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