How to Fry an Egg

Heather says:

Today we’re covering fried eggs -as new projects to procrastinate develop- I’ll also address: scrambled eggs, omelets, frittatas, quiche, and my as yet unnamed hybrid of the three techniques that feeds my family on a busy evening when I have no interest in effort.

 

How to Fry an Egg Tutorial

 

So what is a fried egg? Well there are five ways to have them, in this tutorial:

The Great Fried Egg TutorialGot that?

If you do not have a nonstick pan before you even pull the eggs out of the fridge, you have a little prep work. Grab a bottle of vegetable oil, a paper towel, salt, and your pan. Wipe the pan with a thin coat of vegetable oil. Heat the pan over medium high heat until it is very hot, but not smoking. Turn off the burner and let it cool completely. Your pan is now conditioned and primed for use.

You must do this if you are using a stainless steel pan or the eggs will stick in the tiny scratches and pits on your pan’s surface. The vegetable oil seals these cracks and lets the eggs fry without making a horrific stuck on mess. If some bits of egg do stick to your pan, scrub with a little bit of salt and a paper towel between batches. If you use soap and water, you’ll have to recondition your pan before cooking more eggs.

Now we’re ready to fry some eggs.

Whether the eggs are basted, sunny side up, over light (easy), over medium, or over hard they all start the same:

Gather your conditioned or nonstick pan, your fat -butter, bacon grease, coconut oil, or vegetable oil,- and a spatula. Flipping eggs without a spatula will be covered in a future post. Just hang tight if that’s your goal.

The amount of fat you’ll use depends completely on the size of your pan. You want 1/8″ of fat / oil, less than that and the eggs may stick with more, they may be greasy.

Turn your burner to medium or your griddle to 325F. Allow the pan and fat to heat. To check and see if the pan is ready sprinkle a TINY -you read that right? TINY- amount of water. It should sizzle. If it pops, turn the heat DOWN.

Oil that is too hot causes brown, crispy edges.

Oil that is too cool lets the eggs spread too far which makes them harder to flip.

Reduce the heat to low, unless you’re using a griddle, in that case just leave it alone, but know you’ll have to flip sooner.

Now here’s where the methods diverge.

Baste with a lidFor basted eggs, sprinkle a few drops of water over the eggs and cover. Cook just until the whites are set. The steam will create a thin film of cooked white over the yolk.

For sunny side up eggs cook slowly until the whites are set, then use a spatula to remove from the pan. This is boring, but effective.

To fry eggs over light, medium, or hard they must be turned.

Egg Flip Slide the tip of your spatula all the way around the edge of the white, to ensure the egg is not sticking the pan. Then, slide the spatula halfway under the eggs, in one motion lift up and turn over toward the side of the egg that does not have the spatula under it. That edge (marked in my ever so spiffy illustration with a blue arrow) should never lose contact with the pan.

Remember! Flip gently or suffer the consequence of broken yolks. Remember you will probably break a few before you get the hang of the turn.

Ready to flipFor over light / easy eggs leave them alone until the edge of the white is set, there will still be a pool of unset white surrounding the yolk. Let the egg cook for only a few seconds to set the rest of the white and transfer it to a plate to serve.

Over medium eggs should cook until the white is mostly set, then turned and allowed to cook for 15 – 20 seconds. The yolk should be thick and partially, but not fully cooked. If you break it with a fork, it should still flow, but not be super runny.

Break YolksFor over hard eggs, break the yolk with a fork, then flip and allow to cook until the yolk is completely set.

Enjoy!

Related Post:

How to Hard Boil an Egg

French Onion Soup

retrochick.JPGMichele says:

I’m not a fan of summer; it’s hot, sticky, and—for someone as pale as I—sunburny.  I spend most of the summer indoors, hoping for a cloudy day.  For reasons probably related to my aversion to summer, I long ago decided that August is, in fact, autumn.  And what does autumn mean?  Soup, of course!  Every year, I spend my late summer early autumn days making and consuming vats of soup.  In the first week of my imagined autumn, I have already jumped into preparing my favorite soup: French onion.

I know that most folks consider French onion soup to be a red and white can classic, but it really is so much more.  It is a simple but classic, decadent but inexpensive, fancy yet homey French entrée dating back to the 1700s.  (More recently, it was featured in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking.)  A restaurant must have for many, this timeless soup can be made at home with little more than beef broth, onions, cheese, and bread.  Why not give it a shot next time you’re craving soup (or croûte/little toasts)?  It’s “fall”, after all.

French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup

  • 4 large Spanish onions, halved and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pinch of sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ¼ cup dry red or white wine (or good balsamic vinegar)
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 32 ounces (4 cups) beef stock, preferably homemade
  • 16 ounces (2 cups) chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon thyme, crushed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup of shredded Swiss or Gruyere cheese per serving
  • 2 slices baguette per serving
  • Olive oil, for drizzling on baguette slices

 

  1.  Melt the butter over medium heat in a large (preferably enameled cast iron) stock pot.  Add the olive oil and the sliced onions.  Cook the onions, stirring frequently, until softened and browned, about 30 to 40 minutes.  Add the pinches of sugar and salt after the onions first begin to brown.
  2. Once the onions have caramelized, sprinkle them with ¼ cup of flour.  Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the flour smells nutty.
  3. Deglaze the pan with ¼ cup red wine.  Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the wine no longer smells of alcohol.
  4. Add 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 32 ounces of beef stock and 16 ounces of chicken stock to the pot with the onions.  Stir until the soup begins to thicken.
  5. Add the bay leaf and ¼ teaspoon thyme to the soup.  (Taste after 15 minutes and add an additional ¼ teaspoon if you desire.)  Taste and season with additional salt and pepper as needed.  Simmer for one hour, skimming any white foam off the top every 20 minutes.
  6. To make toasts (croûtes), drizzle or brush each slice of baguette slices with olive oil.  Place the bread slices on a large baking sheet.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through, until very crunchy and toasted.
  7. Just before serving, light your broiler.  Spoon the soup into oven-proof bowls or ramekins and top with an even sprinkling of Swiss cheese.  Place the ramekins of soup on a large baking sheet and melt the cheese under the broiler until browned.
  8. Once the cheese has melted and the ramekin has cooled slightly, place the soup on a plate with two croûtes and serve.  (The croûtes are best after being soaked in the soup for a while. ;-) )

Makes 4 main course (or 6-8 appetizer) servings.

Michele Newell is a housewife turned blogger turned Home Ec 101 contributor.  You can read her near daily ramblings at Dreams Unreal.

WinnerwinnerThe winner of the Everyday Raw Gourmet Cook is commenter #5 better known as: J. Grab. I’ll be contacting J. via email to have him send his shipping details. Thanks to everyone who entered.

Picnic Perfect: Potato Salad

Dear Home Ec 101:

My neighborhood will soon be throwing their annual blockparty. I don’t want anyone to know that I can’t cook for beans. Do you have a recipe for me? Please don’t tell me just to go to the deli and put it in a new bowl. I want to try, but I’m busy and I need something I can make the night before. Oh, and I’m vegetarian but eggs and dairy are fine.

Signed,

Persnickety Picnicker

Heather says:

I recently talked my mother into giving up her potato salad recipe. Everyone needs a go-to dish for events like this and as long as you promise she won’t be there, you are welcome to bring this dish. This recipe is easily halved and makes a great side dish for BBQ dinners.

 

Potato Salad

Potato Salad

Ingredients:

  • 8 medium potatoes (Yukon Gold for best results)
  • 5 hardboiled eggs – (save two for garnish) And here’s How to Hard Boil Eggs
  • 1 medium sweet onion – diced
  • 2-3 green onions – chopped or diced
  • 2 stalks of celery – chopped or diced
  • ½ cup canned olives – green and black, sliced (save a few for garnis)
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 TBSP sweet pickle relish
  • 1 or 2 dill pickles, diced or chopped
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard
  • 2-3 TBSP honey mustard or honey mustard salad dressing
  • Salt / Pepper to taste
  • Paprika for garnish / color

Peel and cut up the potatoes, letting them sit in a bowl of lightly salted water during preparation.  Rinse several times and place into deep pan, cover with water. Bring to a simmer or low boil on medium heat until potatoes are cooked, but not mushy, between 10 – 15 minutes.

While the potatoes are cooking, make the dressing. In a separate, medium bowl combine the mayonnaise, mustard, honey mustard, pickle relish, diced dill pickles, celery, sweet and green onions, and salt/pepper. Taste this mixture (use a clean spoon, not your fingers, please!)

When the potatoes are fork tender, drain and rinse with cool water to stop the cooking process. When cool enough to handle, place potatoes in a large bowl.  Peel and cut up the hardboiled eggs (reserving two). Add these to potato mixture.

When you are satisfied with the tastes of the dressing fold it into the potato and eggs. To do this, slide your spoon or spatula down the side of the bowl and then scoop the potatoes to the center. Turn the bowl a little after each scoop. Doing this prevents the spoon from mashing the potatoes.

Cover tightly and refrigerate. It’s best if the flavors have several hours to blend.

Just before serving, add slices of eggs or olives for garnish and sprinkle with paprika for color, if desired.

Enjoy!

*Check out Mouthwatering Monday at Southern Fairytale*

Simple Mushroom Risotto

Heather says:

This recipe for mushroom risotto is about as simple as risotto can get. You see, while risotto is rice, it’s a needy rice. It’s a rice that needs a little nurturing and love, but then, when it’s ready to serve? It brings the awesome. If you really want to make this recipe company worthy -holiday worthy even- then, I highly suggest you use homemade stock. Want to bring on the wow? Use this stock made from roast turkey necks.

It is very important to use a rice like Arborio, to get the proper consistency. The short grains and the way it releases starch as it cooks gives risotto its classic, creamy texture. Yes, Arborio rice isn’t the cheapest out there, but as this dish takes a bit of effort, it’s worth the splurge to have the best results.

Have you made risotto before? I chose to stick to a common mushroom like portobello, as they are easy to find in even small towns. If you want to use fancier mushrooms, by all means go ahead. If you choose to use dried mushrooms, soak them in the stock to rehydrate before chopping (and to flavor the stock).

Are you willing to try now?

Mushroom-Risotto pin

 

: Mushroom Risotto

: Simple mushroom risotto made with baby portobello mushrooms

  • 8 cups chicken or turkey stock
  • 10 oz baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large, yellow onions, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
  • 2/3 cup dry, white wine (cooking wine will do in a pinch, but not for company dinner)
  • 2/3 cup freshly grated parmesan (not the stuff in a green can, unless you’re just in the mood for this and can’t be bothered to go to the store, just don’t tell me about it)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Small handful of fresh parsley, chopped

  • Heat the stock gently either in the microwave or in another pan on the stove. The stock you add to the rice MUST be hot. It doesn’t need to be boiling, but to create the creamy texture of a nice risotto, it should be hot.
  • Melt the butter over medium heat in a large skillet or a stock pot with a HEAVY bottom – using a pot with a thin bottom is asking to scorch the risotto you’re going to a lot of trouble for. Proceed at your own risk.
  • Add the olive oil.
  • Add the onions to the skillet, cook until they just start to become translucent, then add the rice.
  • Stir frequently to toast the rice for a few minutes (3ish). Add the wine to the pan and continue cooking (stirring frequently, still) until the liquid is absorbed.
  • Add 1 cup of the hot stock, stir continuously until the liquid is absorbed (see, I told you this dish was needy).
  • Add the mushrooms, and the garlic, and another cup of stock. Cook and stir until absorbed.
  • Guess what, add another cup of stock, cook and stir until absorbed.
  • Continue in this manner until your rice is just tender and creamy – you may not use all 8 cups of stock. The goal isn’t to make a runny dish, just creamy and beautiful.
  • Stir in the parmesan, taste, adjust the seasoning with salt and freshly ground pepper. Stir in the parsley and serve.

Enjoy!

Picnic Perfect: Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe

Not Really Me

 

Bobbie says:

It’s Memorial Day weekend and many of you will be marking the day with the first cookout of the summer. Here’s a perennial picnic favorite: Classic Macaroni Salad.

I'm ready for my close up, Mr. DeMille

This is a pretty basic recipe – no suspicious vegetables or epicurean excesses here. For some people I know, this is comfort food, pure and simple. Not excessively sweet, and with a hefty helping of eggs to balance out the carb-rich pasta, this could easily work as a meatless main dish.

I always make this a more diabetic-friendly recipe (and lower the overall glycemic index) by using xylitol instead of white sugar. While xylitol can’t sub for sugar in baking without some other recipe alterations, it works perfectly in the dressing for Classic Macaroni Salad.

Oh, and while dijon mustard a wondrous thing and certainly does have its place, that place is not here. Plain yellow mustard is what you want to make this salad work.

Classic Macaroni Salad

  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar (or xylitol)
  • 1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper (or more to taste)
  • 1/4 cup minced celery
  • 1/4 cup minced or shredded carrot
  • 1/8 cup minced onion
  • 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
  • paprika or parsley for garnish, if  you swing that way

Using one of the methods Heather showed us a while ago, hard cook the eggs. Peel as soon as they’re cool enough to handle, using whatever method works for you.

Here’s the method I learned from my mom, and it works for me: using a metal spoon (one from your set of flatware) gently tap the egg all over until the entire shell is crackled.
tap shell with metal spoon to crackle the shell

Pull off a few bits of the shell and the underlying membrane, and then gently slip the spoon between the shell/membrane and the cooked egg white, and pull away the shell in large pieces.

Carefully slip spoon under shell and pull it away
I do this as soon as I can handle the eggs, while they’re still somewhat hot – this method doesn’t work too well once the eggs are cooled. This is the only way I can manage to get somewhat decent looking hard-cooked eggs. After peeling, I alway rinse the eggs to remove any stray bits of shell. This helps to avoid having the wrong sort of crunch in the salad.

Crunchy veggies = yum.
Crunchy eggshell = not so much.

Ready to play dress upBacking up a bit…while the eggs are cooking: in a very large mixing bowl combine the mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, mustard and black pepper, as well as the minced celery, carrot and onion. Mix until well-combined, and set aside.

Oh, the macaroni – you know, you could have been cooking that – in a separate pot, of course – at the same time you’re doing the eggs, which has, most likely, occurred to you by now, and you’ve already done. If not, get a move on, and cook those elbows according to the package directions, just until tender but still slightly firm. Mine took 9 minutes to get to that point. Drain it well, but not obsessively – an extra little bit of water in the mix won’t ruin anything – and dump the warm macaroni in with the dressing. Chop up the hard-cooked eggs however you like – I like big chunks of egg white, so I quarter the eggs lengthwise, then make 3 or 4 horizontal cuts. Add those to the bowl. Using a large spoon, gently fold the still-warm pasta and eggs into the sauce.
Gently, gently

Yes, it’s going to look a bit….too wet. Don’t panic. It’ll be fine. The pasta will easily absorb that extra liquid – that tasty extra liquid – and everything will be awesome and splendiferous and people will wonder at the amazingness of you and your Macaroni Salad of Win, but first you have to chill a bit. (The salad – and you, too. You deserve it.)

Cover the bowl tightly (plastic wrap or foil) or transfer to a lidded container, and chill for at least 2 hours, preferably longer. Before serving, stir it again gently, then add your garnish, if you’re the garnishy type. Being presentationally challenged myself, I just add a touch more cracked black pepper to the top and tuck a few lettuce leaves around the edges. If I have lettuce.

Ta-da!

Picnic Perfect

I hope you have an enjoyable weekend, however you choose to spend it.

 

Bobbie Laughman is an elder caregiver and writer who is quite happy to once again be living near Gettysburg with her husband and son. She also posts at Gruntled. Sheveled. Whelmed. You can contact her there, or by email at Bobbie@Home-Ec101.com