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Apr 23, 2010 12:49 PM

Boiled Eggs using Hot Water, a Mug and a Plate

I work at an espresso cafe where we serve tons of beautiful pastries and fattening yumminess. As you can imagine, since I started spending most of my days here, I have not been eating very healthily. This morning, I bought a dozen organic, free range eggs, intending to scramble some up in the microwave. But I really felt like boiled eggs instead.

Since it's a cafe, we have 195 degree water on tap. So, I plopped a cold egg in a thick-walled ceramic mug, and poured the hot water on top. Covered with a plate. After 5 minutes, I replaced the water with fresh hot water. Did this a couple more times for a total of 20 minutes.

Then I got a cup of ice water and shocked the egg. Peeled the egg easily as the membrane seemed to have pulled away from the rest of the egg.

The Result? A perfectly boiled egg with a slightly soft center. I think I know what I'll be having for breakfast from now on...

My question, has anyone else tried this by just pouring hot water and then leaving covered for say 25 minutes? I mean, I'll probably try it tomorrow, but just wondering if anyone has any experience here..

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  1. I will try this for the heck of it, though at home there's not a big benefit over standard soft-boiling. I HAVE done the soft-cooked in the toaster oven thing, which is convenient and energy-saving if you do the toast at the same time.

    2 Replies
    1. re: greygarious

      How do you soft cook an egg in the toaster oven? I would love to try that.

    2. "My question, has anyone else tried this by just pouring hot water and then leaving covered for say 25 minutes? I mean, I'll probably try it tomorrow, but just wondering if anyone has any experience here.."

      Indeed I do. I still have dreams of this meal ....

      1. I haven't tried this method, but it sounds quite good. Julia Child's recipe for hardboiled eggs using the coddled egg approach is similar enough. You put the eggs in cold water, bring it to a boil, cover it, take it off the heat, and let it stand for 17 minutes before cooling the eggs. (She gives proportions of water to eggs.) So this is the same general approach. Would it help to preheat the mug before putting the egg and water in?

        1. I've mixed boiling water and room temperature water in a crockpot (to get close to 140 degrees--though I suppose I could have just boiled water to 140 degrees), added eggs and cooked them on warm for an hour or so. Once I got the timing, the eggs were perfect because they never got overcooked and the crockpot w/ all the water held at a pretty constant temperature.

          4 Replies
          1. re: chowser

            There's a ryokan in Japan (don't ask me the name! I can't even remember my mother's name!) that is quite famous for slow cooking "perfect" eggs by setting them in their natural hot spring for hours, then serving them. I think the water temperature is a bit lower than 140 degrees because people bathe in the spring water, though presumably not in the same area as the eggs are steeping. But who knows? The eggs are in their shells...

            1. re: Caroline1

              LOL, I'm not sure if I'd want to eat eggs that have been sitting in a tub with a lot of naked people either way. I use 140 degrees because that's the temperature of warm on my crockpot but do think a lower temperature would be better.

              1. re: chowser

                I suspect it depends on what you're after. But if 140° is the lowest your crock pot will crank out, then what's left? I suppose that *IF* you have one of those candle-warmer trivets, and *IF* you have a draft free corner in your kitchen, you could try that.

                I wish I had bookmarked the ryokan that does the eggs in their natural pool. I only remember that it was "just outside Tokyo," but then to an American (who lives in Texas) ALL of Japan is "just outside Tokyo." Did you find the flavor of the egg justified all of the extra trouble? I'm just not sure my taste buds are all that "astute" anymore.

                1. re: Caroline1

                  It wasn't the flavor but the texture that made a difference but it wasn't significantly better than my normal boiled egg (boil water w/ egg, turn off and remove from heat for 10 minutes) that I'd do it on a regular basis. Who wants to wait an hour for a hard boiled egg? I also tried a "poached" egg recommended here a few years ago where you steam the egg on an upside down plate over barely simmering water. I can't remember the temperature of the water but you needed to keep the temperature constant and it was hard to do. It made for a very creamy egg but constant vigilance for half an hour, or however long it took, was too much work. I like my eggs w/ my coffee but am not for all this technique before my coffee!

          2. Well, I guess there's many ways to boil an egg...