The versatile protein powerhouse that is the egg is packed full of vitamins, and oh so affordable. But funnily enough, they’re not always the easiest food to prepare; there’s technique involved in perfecting a poach, timing a runny yolk, and nailing the texture in a scramble.
That’s all once you’ve deciphered whether it’s still good to eat – how can you tell when it’s wearing an opaque shell disguise? Don’t worry – we’ve got your backs, egg-lovers. Starting with the all-important:
Is your egg past its use-by date?
Once your carton has been scrapped, the best way to know if your egg is still good is to place it in a bowl of cold water. If it sinks to the bottom, it’s fresh. If it sinks but is standing on its point – cook with haste – the end is nigh! If it floats to the top, it’s time for the bin. But don’t assume that all the eggs in your carton are doomed if just one doesn’t pass the test.
Show your love with eggs
Take your breakfast in bed up a few notches with these adorable heart-shaped eggs. All you need is a milk or juice carton and a pair of chopsticks! Naw.
Crack, don’t break
We’ve all been there: cracked an egg only to break some of its shell off and have bits floating about in it (which, by the way, are no joy to collect – but wet fingers will do the trick). The good news is, there’s a way around it. It’s all in where you crack it – around the middle of the egg is best, in one steady knock on a flat surface - not on the edge of a bowl or cup. That's it!
Breakfast for an army
Feeding a crew for breakfast? Crack an egg into each cup of a muffin tin and bake a dozen in the oven at once. Now all you need is to have those buns and bacon lined up (hot tip: you can crisp up bacon on an oven tray, too!). Or, encase the eggs in ham or prosciutto before baking.
No egg rings? No worries
As tasty as a crisp-edged, runny yolk fried egg is, pretty it isn’t – unless there’s egg rings on hand. And if there isn’t, try frying yours in an onion ring instead. Because let’s be honest, you’re more likely to have onions around than egg rings.
The trick to café-quality poached eggs
This is one to pass down to the grandkids. Forget all those bags and gadgets – all you need to do for perfectly poached eggs every time is to first start with super-fresh eggs, then gently roll them in a pot of boiling water for a few seconds before removing and then starting the poaching process. We have Food Detectives’ Tom Kerridge to thank for this one – get the step-by-step here.
Hate peeling boiled eggs?
Don’t do it. We’re not telling you to embrace the shell (eggs are, sadly, not wholly nose-to-tail) but rather, to bypass all that hot fiddly work and simply cut through the egg. Using a knife to slice it diagonally makes it so much easier to slide the shell off.
Classic eggs: son-in-law eggs with sweet-fish-sauce.
Recreate Wonka’s golden egg moment
For the ultimate egg party trick, turn your whites yellow with this nifty little manoeuvre. An old t-shirt and some elbow grease is all you need to scramble the egg inside the shell, because - novelty.
While we’re on the topic of aesthetics, cloud eggs took over Instagram recently, with all their puff and whimsy. It uses a combination of separation and vigorous whisking – see more here.
PS – is it safe to eat an egg with a blood spot?
It can all get a bit too real when we find a speck of red in our otherwise perfect egg. The good news is that it’s perfectly safe to eat. Sometimes, a blood vessel ruptures when an egg is being formed, presenting as a small blood spot (or a meat spot) on the yolk. Not convinced? Remove it with a spoon.
The very first egg was a special moment on the first episode of River Cottage Australia - catch up on SBS On Demand, and watch as life on the farm unfolds for Paul West, at 6pm weeknights on SBS.
Shake up your first meal of the day with these tasty Mexican-inspired egg tacos. Filled with lashings of charred corn salsa and creamy avocado puree - they'll leave your regular toast for dead.
These pickled eggs are great alongside cured meats, in a sandwich or added to a salad for substance.
Pass around a plate of these devilishly good retro favourites at your next party for bacon and eggs with a difference!
This supremely satisfying breakfast dish of poached eggs with a yoghurt sauce really is fit for a king – there are records of it being cooked in the palace kitchens of Ottoman sultans dating back to the 15th century. The addition of the herb butter and Turkish chilli flakes is a more recent inclusion, but it adds just the right amount of kick to put a pep in your step in the morning.