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Jul 6, 2006 10:36 PM

Poached Egg Question

I have no problem poaching eggs in a nonstick skillet, but I'm trying to avoid teflon...
...When I tried poaching them in my enamaled cast iron, the eggs instantly sank to the bottom of the pan and stuck. I could loosen them with a spatula, but am I missing some trick?
I do add vinegar and usually break the egg into a small bowl to slide it in to the skillet.
Any help appreciated.

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  1. Hum. I'm surprised that the material would have any effect on poaching. The only thing I can think of is that you haven't heated the pan sufficiently (cast iron takes longer to heat than aluminum or stainless steel).

    Also, why are you trying to avoid teflon. The reports of toxins in teflon are only harmful if you heat the teflon with nothing in it. Clearly, having the pan full of water would be fine.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Darren72

      Don't think it's the heating because water is simmering for poaching eggs.
      On the Teflon issue, lots of information seems to be coming down on the side of not using it anymore. See Nora Ephron's piece in the New York Times a couple of weeks ago if you disagree. Sure, the science is not yet perfect, but I'm starting to have doubts about its safety.

      1. re: JPomer

        My first rule is "if you are uncomfortable, don't use it". Having said that, I'm not about to take advice from Nora Ephron. Here is another take:

        1. re: Darren72

          You wouldn't happen to work for DuPont, Do you?

          1. re: JPomer

            Ha, ha. No, I don't work for them. But I'm just a very sceptical person when it comes to mixing the media, science, and safety. Like I said, though, anyone who feels uncomfortable using teflon (or eating butter, etc.) shouldn't do it.

          2. re: Darren72

            The proper way to cook on Teflon is to never heat it above medium.

      2. don't eat the pan and you'll be fine...

        1. I have exactly the same experience as you. I just loosen them gently with a spatula and they're fine. I think it's just the nature of eggs to bond to anything they're heated in.

          1. I guess I misread your original post. I thought the problem was that the eggs sank in the cast iron pan, but floated in the teflon. Cheryl_h intepreted the problem to be that they stuck to the cast iron, but not to the teflon. Ah! Yes, as she said, eggs stick to everything (except teflon). She is correct that if you give them a little nudge once they hit the bottom, you'll be fine.

            1. seriously-get some movement going in the water. This will also wrap the white around the yolk-make sure them eggs are fresh also. i used to poach off 6 or cases(15 dzn) of eggs at a time in whatever i could find; rondeaus to 600's.

              4 Replies
              1. re: dano

                Interesting -- so what's the best way to store a poached egg, and how long will it last? Just put it in an airtight container in the fridge, I'd guess.

                1. re: Darren72

                  in water-will hold for 3-4 days, or lay out on a side towel-a couple of days. Yes wrap em though.

                2. re: dano

                  Exactly...just give the water a swirl, then put the egg in. By the time the water stops moving, the egg will already have set enough to not problem.

                  1. re: dano

                    Swirling the (more than you think you need in quantity) water in the pan (I just stir with a spoon) with one hand as you lower the egg to be poached into the water keeps them from sticking to my crappy revere-ware stainless steel pains.