I’m not a perfect cook.
My palate is not that refined, I love to cook but don’t like to spent hours in the kitchen, I try to hold an 80/20 rule about eating processed foods and I do pretty well but I’m not perfect.
One skill, that I honestly don’t think is a skill is that I can cook a perfect poached egg, using a pan of water and a slotted spoon. It’s not a skill that I learned at home. We had an egg poaching pan, like this one and we used it. I didn’t eat a free-form poached egg until I was 16 and it was made by either Tina and Charles.For a while I tried to poach eggs free form and it never quite worked as I expected, I read Nigel Slater and various other cooks and they never seemed to come together as expected. Eventually, I found a method that worked from Delia Smith, who had a much ridiculed chapter on how to cook an egg in How to Cook, that took me through it.
Once I’d mastered her technique, the water should be off the boil, give the eggs some space and be gentle, poaching eggs was easy.And if you follow me here or on Instagram, you’ll know I eat a lot of poached eggs!
A couple of weeks ago, I came across another tip, from Julia Child, which involves, using a pin to make a tiny whole in the egg shell, putting the egg in boiling water for 10 seconds, removing and then poaching as normal.
Apparently the 10 seconds in boiling water helps the white stick together so you don’t get the floaty bits in the water. So I tried it, without pricking the shell (who has time for that!) and it works.