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Does Nigella Have A Good Method For Poaching Eggs?

Asked by jandrayson. Answered on 5th April 2022

Full question

I've tried several ways of cooking poached eggs, but cannot make them look like the chefs eggs. Does Nigella have a good method?

Image of Nigella's Turkish Eggs
Photo by Jonathan Lovekin
Turkish Eggs
By Nigella
  • 14
  • 2

Our answer

Whilst there are multiple ways to poach eggs, the thing to remember is that the fresher the eggs, the easier it is to get a good shape when poaching them. Very fresh eggs have thick, viscous whites that will set quickly around the yolk as the egg goes into the hot water. As eggs age, the white becomes thinner and more watery and the thinner white forms wispy strings in the water, regardless of the technique used for poaching. So try to use the freshest eggs possible. If you put an egg in a glass of water, fresh eggs will sink to the bottom and lay on their side. Also unless you are a chef cooking multiple poached eggs every day, it is unlikely that your poached eggs will be perfectly shaped. But they will still taste good, so we would suggest not being too worried about the look. You can also neaten up your poached eggs by snipping off the straggly bits of white with clean kitchen scissors as you lift the poached eggs out of the pan.

As most supermarket-bought eggs will be at least a few days old, we would also suggest looking at the egg poaching method suggested by Nigella in her Turkish Eggs recipe (from AT MY TABLE) and also the notes in the "Additional Information" box at the bottom of the recipe. Nigella suggests cracking the egg into a fine-mesh strainer and letting the very watery white drain away, leaving just the more viscous white around the yolk. Then transfer the egg to a ramekin and add a few drops of lemon juice (this helps the whites to set) before slipping the egg into a deep frying pan of gently simmering water to cook. The Turkish Eggs are a delicious way to eat poached eggs, or you can try Nigella's Kate With Chorizo And Poached Egg.

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