No matter how many eggs we flip, fry, poach or scramble, they never look (or, let’s be honest, taste) as good as they do on our brunch plate. So we’re consulting the egg guru: Chef Nick Korbee of the popular NYC restaurant Egg Shop (and author of the new cookbook of the same name) is here to help us up our yolk game by avoiding these mistakes.
All you want is a little avocado toast, so you boil some water, drop the eggs in…and suddenly there are broken yolks and strings of egg whites all over the pot. Next time, keep those babies intact by adding a drizzle of vinegar or lemon juice to the water. The acid will help bind the whites together and prevent the yolks from breaking. “And release the egg as close to the surface of the water as possible,” Korbee notes. “Do not drop it like a hot mic.”
If you’re making an omelet or scrambled eggs, it might be tempting to whip them up into an airy froth with a blender or hand mixer. “Be warned,” Korbee says. “Styro-weirdness awaits you.” To avoid rubbery, oddly puffy eggs, you’re much better off with a traditional whisk, blending the yolk and white until just combined.
You know that mealy, mushy consistency you get when you try to add tomatoes and spinach to your scrambled eggs? This is totally avoidable. Reduce the heat to medium, and take your time. “Don’t scramble like a maniac,” Korbee advises. “Be chill.” Right before the eggs are done, add in any toppings you’d like.
If you’re still not able to flip eggs in a sauté pan without breaking the yolk, don’t beat yourself up. It takes serious practice. Until then, here’s a quick fix to avoid a broken yolk: cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and turn the heat to low. “This will steam the remaining egg white that covers the yolk and no one will call you out on it.”
If your hard-boiled egg yolks are gray, you’re not timing them properly. “Laziness is the evil empire,” Korbee says. Instead of winging it, follow these rules exactly: Drop the eggs in boiling water for 8 to 11 minutes, then put them into an ice bath immediately. Chill them in the fridge. “I like eight-minute eggs, but the yolk will still be a little gelatinous, just like my man Yoda,” he jokes.