How to “Boil” Eggs

Preparation info

    Appears in

    Craig Claiborne’s Kitchen Primer

    Craig Claiborne’s Kitchen Primer

    By Craig Claiborne

    Published 1969

    • About

    The word “boil” is misused as applied to cooking eggs.

    The eggs should not boil; they should simmer. The cooking time for the eggs depends on various factors, such as how large the eggs are and how cold they are. Preferably they should be at room temperature.


    To soft-cook eggs

    Place the eggs in a saucepan and add cold water to cover. Bring the water to a boil and reduce the heat to simmer. For medium-sized eggs, cook them for 5 to 6 minutes from the time the water comes to a boil.

    To hard-cook eggs

    Simmer them for 12 to 15 minutes. When the eggs are cooked, plunge them immediately into cold water to facilitate peeling. If the eggs are difficult to peel it is probably because they are too fresh.

    Eggs that are particularly large or chilled from recent refrigeration should be cooked a minute or two longer than indicated here.