HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >


What about things you prefer underdone?

A popular thread started by tastyjon asks the question of what foods you prefer slightly burnt or overcooked. Many people chimed in with favorites, including myself, but there are many things I personally prefer slightly underdone by the standards of many.
The first thing that comes to mind is toast. Basically I like to put mine in the toaster long enough to get it warm and just barely crispy around the edges with almost no color as I prefer it to get almost soggy in the middle when the butter melts. Nothing better IMO!Continuing in the realm of breakfast items I prefer my scrambled eggs a bit on the runny side. Most people in my family find this reprehensible, but I cannot tolerate dry scrambled eggs. When I make sweet potato fries it is very much a juggling act as I take my portion out of the oven when they are still very soft, almost soggy, and have to leave the remainder in until they are crisp as that is how my housemates prefer them. On the rare occasion I make a grilled cheese for myself I like mine barely toasted, basically in the skillet until it is just heated through, but not at all golden or crispy throughout. I have known a lot of people with an aversion to things with a soggy texture, but upon reflecton, it is one I seem to enjoy. I also like a slightly underdone cookie, blondie, or brownie. Yum!
Does anyone else have any underdone favorites? Or am I alone in this?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Agree on eggs, always like them on the runny side.

    Seafood - I almost always like my seafood, particularly shellfish, slightly underdone. What most people considered as "just run" is usually overdone for me. That may be because I grew up with sushi and sashimi and Japanese food with seafood mostly raw or only slightly torched or cooked.

    Steak - I should say I want it to be just right (medium rare), but most of the time I got mine slightly more cooked than I want. I would rather have underdone steak (of course, can't be TOO underdone with blood flowing around) than an overcooked tough piece of meat!

    2 Replies
    1. re: kobetobiko

      Agree regarding seafood & steak. I am always hesitant to order salmon in restaurants as I usually find them a bit overcooked.

      1. re: kobetobiko

        Definitely agree about the steak. My friend who works in a kitchen told me to always order about one step below what I want because they tend to over cook them. I like mine medium rare, so I order it rare and it is normally perfect.

      2. Toast, steak, and most veggies. I hate completely soft veggies -- I like them to have a bite to them.

        1. If I'm in a tuna mood and it's on the menu, I sometimes ask the server to bring a raw tuna steak for me to inspect. Some servers react with contempt for the extra trip to the kitchen; others relish the opportunity to show off a special piece of fish. If it passes my sight and smell test, I often have it raw. I know the caveats, and how to cut and trim. Always I can request soy sauce, sometimes wasabi. I always have wasabi in my car or with me when I travel.

          5 Replies
          1. re: Veggo

            wow. you travel with wasabi in your car, impressive. :)

            1. re: fara

              In Florida, wasabi is on my "hurricane preparation" top 100 list. I may be a bit spoiled, but I did all the spoilin' myself, and I'm ready for the big one! You should see what's in the airplane and on the boat. :)

              1. re: Veggo

                Wow. My hurricane stockpile consists of bottled water, dried fruit, nuts, and canned staples, but nothing too interesting. I am thinking a bit of wasabi might make the notion of surviving post hurricane a bit more bearable, haha. If it actually came down to surviving on Campbells i am thinking I'd be wishing I'd gotten blown away, haha.

                1. re: ArikaDawn

                  Hey, AD, most evacuation routes, at least the scenic ones, pass fish markets. Think tuna steak....car has chinette, flatware, soy sauce, wasabi, cooler, ice... a sashimi fiesta! A storm doesn't have to ruin your day. Last summer we had no hurricanes and I ate my friggin' canned hams until December. I'm older and wiser now. These overpaid meteorologists in Florida exaggerate everything.

                  1. re: Veggo

                    Last summer was a nice respite from storms and I, like you, was left eating canned goods I had bought as a precaution once it became clear we werent going to see any hurricane action. I can't help but prepare some though. We weren't overly prepared a couple of years ago and the week after Wilma where we were w/o power grew tiresome not so much because of the heat, lack of hot showers, boredom etc., but because of the diet consisting mostly of pb and j and spamwiches. That year I let my guy do the hurricane shopping. Distinctly bad idea.

          2. Tuna and all veggies. I love rare/raw tuna, but I'm not a big fan of cooked tuna. I hate it when resto's have "pan-seard" tuna on the menu and it comes fully cooked through.

            1 Reply
            1. re: SweetPea914

              SP914, I agree completely about the pan seared tuna. If it's not overcooked, sometimes the dry rub is so much like battery acid in taste that it ruins even the edible center. Give me raw and I'll doctor it up to my own preference.

            2. Sugar cookies need to be slightly underdone to be perfect.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ESNY

                I agree about tuna, lamb, and even calves' liver and pork. However, I have about had it with woody, munchy veggies (chew, chew, chew), and pasta that is so al dente that it breaks up into little hard bits in my mouth.

              2. Completely agre about cookies and brownies. I love my brownies to be almost liquid in the center, to the point that I have to eat them with a fork.

                1. Pasta

                  Scrambled eggs


                  Grilled scallops

                  Corn on the cob

                  Hash browns

                  1. Brownies- I like them wet and fudgy, so you can still almost taste the batter- never dry and cakey

                    1. Steak and veggies, always.

                      But at home -- definitely cookies! I have to admit, there's nothing better than cookies that are either totally uncooked or just barely warmed through.

                      1. soft poached eggs, scrambled eggs, steak, all seafood, calves liver, molten cakes (should be molten, not just mushy in the middle), corn on the cob, pork and chicken (not so much underdone in the sense of raw but not gov standards), steamed or boiled veg.

                        this is an interesting thread. makes you wonder think about how "regularly done" is often "overdone"...

                        1. love shellfish underdone and most importantly steak must be very underdone. I like it slightly browned or charred on the outside and completely raw throughout (not in the middle, but in the entire inside).

                          Also love my eggs sunnyside up with the white and yolk barely cooked....love slurping up my eggs (: or I;ll eat the yolks raw at times.

                          Most importantly, I love my veggies barely cooked, because I'm all about crunchy veggies

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: bitsubeats

                            All of the above, and add bacon. I hate burnt, or dried out bacon. Like it when it's chewy.

                            1. re: bitsubeats

                              In restaurant parlance, that's a black and blue steak. Burnt on the outside (black) and cold on the inside (blue). Rare steak, yum.

                              OTOH, my bacon and toast must be extra brown and crispy, and my sister, who also likes rare steak and burgers, prefers her cookies burnt. Once I burnt a bunch and was going to eat them for penance and she took them. I told her to take the good ones, she said she preferred the burnt ones. OK.......

                            2. I like the "sad streak" at the top of a loaf of pound cake when it's just a tad underdone. It's the best part of a slice.

                              Corn on the cob is something I also like underdone. There should be a fresh crunch to each bite.

                              1. Any and all baked goods...cupcakes, cookies, brownies, muffins...I like em all soft and chewy on the inside; I always bake them a couple of minutes less than what the recipe calls for when I'm making them for myself.

                                Also, this doesn't really fit into this topic or the overdone food one, but it seems to sort of relate: when eating tortilla chips and salsa, I like to soak my chips in the salsa for a couple minutes, not to the point that they're soggy but just so that they've absorbed some of the salsa. Mmmm.

                                1. Agree on the seafood and the steaks. I also like pork to be slightly underdone. I think it just tastes better when a little red.

                                  1. eggs of any kind
                                    cheese that's been "under" aged
                                    contrary to most people, i hate steaks black on the outside and raw on the inside. i don't like the grill taste, and i feel like the person cooking it doesn't know what they're doing. (personal preference). i like steaks brown on the outside and med rar inside. as they would come out in a broiler - lamb chops that way are fantastic - add some garlic, salt, pepper.....