this day in nerdgirl history

my first perfectly soft-boiled egg aka the great soft-boiled egg caper

I have been on a mission this week. A mission to make the perfect soft-boiled egg.

This might sound a little bit easier than it actually turned out to be…

My infatuation with soft-boiled eggs started in Croatia whilst breakfasting with the Austrians who always have soft-boiled eggs for breakfast served up in cute little egg cups. Fast forward to the Alps trip where once again we had more soft-boiled eggs. Then on to Fresno where I coaxed Fujie into making me eggs every morning and she accidently hard-boiled them everytime (not to mention that she had no egg cup which made it really hard to eat out of the shell anyway).

Upon my return to London I purchased an egg cup set from eBay that came complete with its own little salt shaker and spoon. Quite cute really.

Then I bought a half a dozen eggs and did a quick Google search for softboiled eggs where I found numerous different methods for cooking them properly.

You’d think that this process would be pretty damned simple. Boil water, insert egg, remove egg.

It has actually proven to be a little trickier than that…I have used the entire 6 eggs – one per day – and only today on the last one did I finally pefect it.

What methods did I try?

1) The Delia method – Simmer water, insert egg for 1 minute, remove and let sit for 6-7 minutes. This produced a nearly raw egg.

2) The Waitrose method – Put the eggs in cold water, bring water to a boil, leave in for 3 minutes from boiling. This also produced nasty runny eggs even worse than the Delia method.

3) Random other methods and timings – Boiling water, inserting egg, leaving for 3 minutes, 3 1/2 minutes, 4 minutes – All produced slimey, runny eggs although at 4 minutes I started to have a result that was nearly good.

4) Perfection – Boiled water, inserted egg, looked at my watch to time 4 1/2 minutes, realised that I hadn’t worn the Rolex for a few days so the self-winding had made my time incorrect, changed time on watch, realised that I just totally screwed up my egg timing by doing that, stared at the wall for a minute annoyed at myself, removed egg from boiling water. Voila! It was perfect. I guess I just have to follow this method in the mornings now.


my perfect softboiled egg