When I first heard this question at a breakfast restaurant in lekki, I was somewhat at sea as to what my reply would be. While trying to maintain a perfect composition and leave the impression that i’m a rather sophisticated customer, I really didn’t intend to give a conventional reply. “Sunny side up” I replied with a fine smile but I knew they had better options. What I didn’t know was what exactly they were called. The menu had no pictures so that wasn’t very helpful either.
This article will not only help you understand the ‘egg terms’ used in fancy restaurants but it will teach how to be much more creative with eggs in your kitchen.
I’ll take you through the different ways to prepare plain eggs for a super breakfast!
- Hard Boiled Eggs
This is what we often refer to as ‘boiled eggs’. However there are different versions of boiled eggs so when next you’re referring to eggs that have been boiled in their shells for over 10 minutes, please be more specific by saying “Hard Boiled Eggs”.
- Soft Boiled Eggs
This is what some of us call ‘per-boiled eggs’. It’s preparation process is similar to that of the hard boiled eggs except that you cut the cooking time by half or thereabout. This gets the egg white cooked while leaving the yolk runny.
- Hard Scrambled Eggs
This is one perfect quick-easy-lazy meal. Simply crack the eggs into bowl and whisk. You may add some spices of your choice. Then pour the mixture into a heating pan with very little oil. Mix till it’s all dried up. This can be done in just 2-3 minutes.
- Soft Scrambled Eggs
Just like soft boiled eggs, the difference between this and hard scrambled eggs is the cooking time. This is also not as easy and quick as the hard scrambled eggs as you have to turn the egg in the pan carefully to make sure every part of it is partially cooked. You can add milk while whisking the egg to give it a finer texture and a better taste.
- Sunny Side Up
As the name implies, the top of the egg is as beautiful as the sun! Simply crack the egg directly into a greased pan. Make sure the yolk retains its perfect round nature as much as possible. Allow it to fry until the edges turn brown. DO NOT FLIP! (you’ll find out why later). The yolk stays runny and the albumen is partially or completely set depending on how long you fry it.
- Over Easy Eggs
This is my favorite version of plain eggs and all my life i’ve always mistook it for the sunny side up! Sunny side up is converted to over easy eggs once its flipped and the other side is allowed to fry until a thin film is formed above the yolk.
- Over Medium Eggs
This is the next step after over easy. Here the egg is fried, flipped, and then fried a little longer. You’ll develop a thicker film on the yolk, but the inside is still runny.
- Over Hard Eggs
This is the crunchiest of them all! Over hard eggs are fried, flipped and the fried again until both the egg white and the yolk are properly cooked. The yolk should be as cooked as the yolk of a hard boiled egg.
- Poached Eggs
To prepare, pour cold water into a large pot to a depth of 8cm. Add vinegar and boil over medium heat. Then crack one egg into a shallow bowl. Using a wooden spoon, stir the water to create a whirlpool. Pour the egg into water and cook for 2 to 3 minutes for a soft yolk or 3 to 4 minutes for a firm yolk. Remove egg from water and serve.
- Basted Eggs
While frying an egg in oil, scoop and pour the extra oil on top of the egg repeatedly. This cooks the yolk and top whites without forcing you to flip it. Another method is to pour some water into the pan and then cover the egg with a lid, to steam the whites. If you are able to do this very quickly, the whole egg will get cooked before the edges start to turn brown.
- Baked or Shirred Eggs
Here, the eggs are cracked and baked in a dish. “Shirred” refers to the flat-bottomed dish in which they’re frequently cooked. The eggs are usually mixed with other ingredients. The white mixes in and gets cooked through, while the yolk is left runny. The benefit of this method is that the egg blends perfectly into the ingredients.
Why don’t you try an ‘eleven-day-eleven-egg-versions’ challenge. Starting from version one, prepare a different version each day until day eleven. You can do it with family and friends for a more fun experience. As always, let me know how it goes in the comment section below. Make sure you get Danyaye eggs for this challenge for premium quality and more value for your money. Enjoy the rest of your day!