There’s no better way to start your morning than with some hearty eggs. This protein-packed ingredient can be prepared in about a dozen different ways: fried, boiled, poached, etc. But the most contentious iteration of the egg is easily the scrambled egg.
Like many people, I grew up eating my eggs scrambled hard…harder than hard. My mom would scramble eggs into small, yellow bits. I grew a distaste for scrambled eggs, which I realized later in adulthood was really just a distaste for over-cooked eggs. Growing up, eggs that were runny or generally soft were deemed undercooked and inedible. If I had only known then what I knew now.
In adulthood, I found that many of my friends were also accustomed to the ultra-hard scrambled eggs that I grew to loathe. But once I learned to scramble my eggs more softly, I was determined to change their minds. Now this isn’t a manifesto against well-done eggs, though I do not personally classify well-done eggs as good eats. This is proof that eggs can be well-done, and not hammered beyond recognition.
1. Turn down the heat
The single biggest reason cooks over-cook eggs is the temperature of the stovetop. Eggs will become tough when cooked over HIGH heat. So, if you only take one tip from The Handy Chef, turn down the heat when you scramble eggs! Use MEDIUM to MEDIUM-LOW heat when scrambling eggs.
2. Salt after cooking, not before
Most home cooks prep their eggs in this order: crack eggs into a bowl, add salt and pepper, mix in the bowl, then dump the eggs into the hot skillet. I recommend delaying step 2 in this process. Adding salt to the raw eggs draws moisture out of the whites, resulting in a drier finished product. After scrambling yours eggs, sprinkle them with salt. You will taste the difference.
3. Add fat at the end of cooking
This tip is optional, but adds a delicious element. If you want creamier, silkier eggs, then add a small dollop of fat near the end of cooking. Butter is a great option, but goat cheese, creme fraiche, or olive oil work well too!
4. Remove from heat, as needed
Again, this is about temperature control. During the cooking process, if you notice your skillet getting too hot, or you notice your eggs sticking to the pan, don’t be afraid to lift the pan away from the heat source. Once the temperature is manageable again, you can place it back on the heat source. This will prevent over-cooking.
5. Stop scrambling
Eggs have a hefty amount of protein in them. Because of this, the proteins retain heat and continue cooking after the you turn off the stove. So, final tip, stop cooking the eggs a few seconds before the eggs appear “done.”
With these tips, you can enjoy scrambled eggs in a whole new way! Instead of dry, yellow bits, you can have soft, fluffy eggs every time.
How do you like your eggs? Hard, soft, medium?