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Hard boiled eggs.... peeling issues

l
LovesToCook08 Nov 30, 2010 06:16 AM

Hi
I am having trouble removing the shell from hard boiled eggs without loosing some of the white. I bring the eggs up to a boil remove from the heat and let sit for 15minutes. I'm in Denver and need the 15 minutes. I then shock them in ice water and try to peel... What am I doing wrong? How do you peel hard boil eggs without loosing any of the white and keeping it looking perfect? Jen

  1. bushwickgirl Nov 30, 2010 06:37 AM

    Are your eggs fresh from the hen? Age them for a week or more. Is this a common occurance with the eggs you buy? Age them for a week or more. Just ten minutes ago, I actually hard boiled and peeled four "older" supermaket eggs, gotta have some age on them, and they were difficult to peel. I cooked them the same way you do, although just for 12 minutes, shocked under cold running water, cracked by running them up the side of the sink (old chef trick), and still a problem peeling. I used to use salt in the water, but that doesn't do anything. Neither does the addition of vinegar. How you crack them makes no difference, either.

    Did you cover the pot after removing it from the heat? Not that that matters. I have probably cooked and peeled five thousand million eggs in my life and still occasionally get unpeelable ones.

    There have been/are many threads on this subject, here are a few, and you'll get lots of ideas for why and how to avoid the issue. The bottom line is that, beyond freshness, eggs are just sometimes difficult to peel:

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/672343?tag=search_results;results_list#5234980
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/614137?tag=search_results;results_list#4618965
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/738115?tag=search_results;results_list#5959035
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/504636?tag=search_results;results_list#3546837

    This thread discusses high altitude egg cookery:

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/3683...

    1. y
      yfunk3 Nov 30, 2010 07:39 AM

      I try to peel them underwater (in the cold water that I shock them in, as soon as possible) and that usually works, but yeah...sometimes they're just difficult to peel. I guess it depends on the chicken? Heh.

      1. Duppie Nov 30, 2010 07:56 AM

        Boil then as you normally would and then drain off hot water, take pot handle in both hands and then rotate pot in a circle vigorously until all shells are cracked from hitting other eggs or pot sides. peel off shells and rinse now unshelled eggs to capture any strays.

        8 Replies
        1. re: Duppie
          AmyH Oct 17, 2013 07:38 AM

          I also drain the hot water then shake them around in the pan until the shells crack. But then I add very cool water and let them sit in that so the cold water can get between the egg and the shell to loosen it. I find this works very well.

          1. re: AmyH
            iL Divo Oct 25, 2013 09:26 AM

            this is the method I did yesterday, sadly, it was a fail for this egg crackin lass :(

            1. re: iL Divo
              AmyH Oct 25, 2013 11:09 AM

              Sorry. I hope you can find another method that works better for you.

              1. re: iL Divo
                John E. Oct 25, 2013 01:21 PM

                Have you tried the steaming method yet? I will never go back to simmering eggs in water ever again.

                1. re: John E.
                  iL Divo Oct 25, 2013 05:23 PM

                  John talk to me please about steaming.
                  is that method here on this page of questions regarding HB egg peeling?

                  1. re: iL Divo
                    John E. Oct 25, 2013 06:31 PM

                    I posted a link downthread, but here it is again.

                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/777314

                    Basically, you either use a collapsable steamer basket, or use a kettle with a pasta strainer insert (this is what I do). Put a couple of inches of water into a kettle, bring the water to a boil, add the eggs with the strainer or steamer, cover, and reduce the heat to medium to keep the water boiling/steaming. I then drop the strainer or steamer basket into a sink with ice water for 5 minutes. I usually then let them dry on a towel on the counter and tcouhen put them back into the egg carton and refrigerate them. Mark each egg with a Sharpie so you know they are cooked. Of course you don't need to do this if you are going to use them right away. They seem to peel just as easy cold as they are hot.

                    I have found that 13 minutes is the time to steam if the eggs come right out of the refrigerator using large eggs.

                  2. re: John E.
                    scubadoo97 Oct 25, 2013 05:54 PM

                    Yup, steaming is the way to go. I've done it in a pressure cooker. 5 min at pressure with 5 min natural cool down then cool off in water with equal success. Steaming is easier.

                2. re: AmyH
                  c oliver Oct 25, 2013 09:54 AM

                  As soon as I drain, I start running cold tap water in til it overflows and has completely cooled the pan. Then I add ice cubes and gently crack the eggs all over while in the water. Leave for five minutes. Never a problem.

              2. EM23 Nov 30, 2010 10:24 AM

                Two tips I probably learned on these boards are to
                1- add a splash of vinegar to the boiling water before putting eggs in and
                2 -when eggs are done cooking place them straight into ice water for a minute or so
                The shell peels off easily each time.

                1 Reply
                1. re: EM23
                  shanagain Dec 5, 2010 08:14 AM

                  The vinegar actually serves a separate purpose - if in the case of any slight cracks, it reacts with the protein to thicken the white and seal the "leak."

                2. oana Nov 30, 2010 11:13 AM

                  Hi there,
                  Peel them under running, cool water. Then enjoy eating them :).
                  Oana

                  1. l
                    LauraGrace Nov 30, 2010 12:53 PM

                    Fresh eggs stick to the shell when boiled, and the fresher they are, the worse they stick. If you want perfect hard boiled eggs, buy them a week or two (or three) in advance of when you want to use them. As always, ignore the "use by" date on the carton -- it's basically useless.

                    1. mariacarmen Nov 30, 2010 01:04 PM

                      Use a teaspoon to get under the thin membrane once you've cracked and started peeling the egg. you should be able to peel the egg by sliding the spoon around the egg under the membrane, and the shell should come off in big pieces (or sometimes one whole piece!) with membrane still attached to the shell. makes for very fast egg peeling.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: mariacarmen
                        Duppie Nov 30, 2010 07:20 PM

                        Fast egg peeling? really? did you happen to read what you just wrote?

                        1. re: Duppie
                          mariacarmen Nov 30, 2010 10:29 PM

                          not sure what you mean.... did i say something weird?? not getting it.... it actually goes really fast!

                      2. bushwickgirl Nov 30, 2010 01:07 PM

                        I forgot to mention this earlier, if you're hard boiling eggs for deviled eggs or some other dish where you want a nice looking white, add a few extra eggs to your pot "just in case." Ten to one, all the eggs will peel just fine, but at least you'll be prepared for inevitability.

                        1. goodhealthgourmet Nov 30, 2010 07:52 PM

                          the one addition tip i learned here on CH that has made a difference for me is adding a generous handful of salt to the cooking water. don't know why it helps, but it does!

                          i now do that, plus my standard process of:
                          - only using eggs that have at least reached the date on the carton
                          - letting the eggs sit out at room temp for at least 48 hours before cooking
                          - draining immediately & shocking in ice water
                          - rolling the egg on the counter (or in the sink)

                          now nearly all of the shells slip off like a dream. there's always an egg or two that still has a clingy shell or membrane, but when you consider that i cook 1.5 or 2 dozen at a time, one or two troublemakers isn't so bad :)

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                            Caroline1 Nov 30, 2010 08:13 PM

                            All of the things ghg says help! In addition, I not only peel eggs under running tap water (not too fast) but use the stream of water to help separate egg from shell by directing it onto the section I'm peeling. As for the actual peeling, my grandfather taught me years ago to 1. hit the egg against the counter fat end first, 2. hit the egg on the counter pointy end first, 3 push in to crack the shell in a few places using thumb, 4. roll the egg between palms vigorously until egg shell is fully crazed, 5. PEEL...! Works for me, and if you're into crafts, save the egg shells to make "mosaics" on little wooden boxes and such. Good luck!

                          2. diesel Nov 30, 2010 09:09 PM

                            How long do you keep them in the ice water? I find if my eggs haven't cooled enough, the shells are more stubborn than they are when they've been allowed to cool more. Still have occasional ugly eggs!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: diesel
                              bushwickgirl Dec 1, 2010 02:58 AM

                              Crack the shells and allow the eggs to cool completely in the ice water, 10-15 minutes.

                              I find that if I don't crack, but just chill and refrigerate for another day, shell on, they often are a bit more difficult to peel than if I had peeled them immediately after cooking. The inner membrane shrinks and seems to reattach itself to the white, making the shell less lightly to slip right off. A minor blip.

                              To be honest, I just don't care how badly my eggs behave anymore, the occasionally difficult egg is a fact of life. There is a certain set cooking method that should be adhered to for success, but if life gives you a few unpeelable eggs, make egg salad, or something like that.

                              After reading the numerous threads here with all the suggested techniques for getting it right every time, I almost want to write a book. ;-)

                            2. bushwickgirl Dec 1, 2010 02:37 AM

                              Linked from another thread, a light hearted scientific explanation by Harold McGee, on why it seems eggs are getting harder to peel:

                              http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/200...

                              He advocates adding a bit of baking soda to increase the alkalinity of the boiling water when cooking very fresh eggs.

                              I boiled another four eggs this morning, from the same batch as yesterday, same cooking method, same cracking technique, and they peeled perfectly. Ah, life, go figure.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: bushwickgirl
                                goodhealthgourmet Dec 1, 2010 08:44 AM

                                "He advocates adding a bit of baking soda to increase the alkalinity of the boiling water when cooking very fresh eggs."
                                ~~~~~~~~~~~
                                i need to crack open my copy of OF&C to see *why* alkaline water helps.

                                i first discovered McGee when i had to buy that book for one of my Food Science classes in grad school, and that class was where i learned that older eggs peel more easily - we actually did an entire lab devoted to cooking & peeling eggs at various stages of freshness. considering how frequently i do them at home, it was a revelation that has honestly made my life easier.

                                BTW, BG, this morning's eggs were easier to peel because they were a day older ;)

                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                  bushwickgirl Dec 2, 2010 08:52 AM

                                  "this morning's eggs were easier to peel because they were a day older ;)"

                                  Must have been it. I've threw out the carton so there's no checking the sell by date, although that doesn't indicate the date they were laid, but they were just supermarket eggs, so I can't consider that they were spring chickens. ;)

                                  As to OF&C, page 69, but it essentially has to do with the pH of the egg, below 8.9, the "inner membrane tends to adhere to the albumen." After three days of refrigeration, the pH is up around 9.2, the problem of membrane adherence is gone. By using a little baking soda in the boiling water, you alter the pH, the author accurately suggests.

                                  Read the page, though, as he's not really clearly advocating using baking soda; he mentions the soapy taste it can impart if not neutralized by an acid, but he seems to suggest that the addition is the best bet when boiling very fresh eggs. He also mentions using salt, as you do, but writes that no one knows why that works, if indeed it does.;-) Then there's the eggshell piercing technique...

                                  His bottom line, as is mine, for the most successful peeling is quickly chilling the eggs in cold water after cooking.

                              2. chowser Dec 2, 2010 09:00 AM

                                This was in the Washington Post yesterday, from Cooking for Geeks. It's about shock cooking eggs, first hot, then cold then hot for the perfect boiled eggs. Has anyone tried it? It makes sense, logically.

                                http://projects.washingtonpost.com/re...

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: chowser
                                  bushwickgirl Dec 2, 2010 09:10 AM

                                  That's now on tomorrow morning's egg cooking technique list. I'll report back.

                                2. j
                                  jhopp217 Dec 2, 2010 09:22 AM

                                  I actually just made hard boiled eggs this past weekend. and I had a problem with the first one, but the rest were easy after I did these things

                                  You must add salt to the water!
                                  Ran under very cold water for about 10-15 seconds.
                                  Don't use the "old trick" of rolling the eggs first
                                  Crack the egg at the most narrow point - this should give you a spot to grab.
                                  As you peel, don't try to get the entire shell off in one peel.
                                  Spin the the egg and peel slowly.

                                  Personally I like my hard boiled eggs still warm, so I don't like peeling them under cold water.

                                  1. seedyone Dec 3, 2010 12:15 AM

                                    Learned this from watching Jacques Pepin a while back:

                                    Once cooked (methods vary) take pot, w/eggs still in it, to sink & overfill w/cold tap water untill water runs cold from pot. Drain until water comes halfway up the eggs & add lots of ice.

                                    Now vigorously shake the pot to shatter shells. Then vigorously shake them again. You want shells in tiny shatters. Leave in the ice water until completely cool.

                                    As the ice water enters the quickly cooling interior it will rapidly drop the temperature to avoid over cooking & the unattractive greenish/sulfurous yolks & as the whites shrink, they cool & the water will fill the space in the shell.

                                    Once thoroughly cooled, further shatter the shells by tapping against a flat surface around the equator of the egg, if needed. Starting there peel away a 'belt' of shell & if still resistant, use running cold water (or at least under cold water in a bowl/pot) to remove the 'polar caps'.

                                    Another tip: if you use 'older' eggs you will find an air pocket has developed which can cause a dimple in the cooked white (usually at the big end). To avoid this pierce the big end of each uncooked egg. I find a map pin is best but the tip of a paring knife or skewer will do. This is so the air can escape as the temperature rises & the whites expand.

                                    No matter which cooking method you use, always bring eggs to room temp (run under warm tap water for 5 Min. if your pressed for time) & if using previously simmering water as you cooking method of choice, ease the eggs in w/a basket or slotted spoon as to not 'shock' or drop & crack the shells before you want to.

                                    CD

                                    14 Replies
                                    1. re: seedyone
                                      j
                                      jhopp217 Dec 3, 2010 06:46 AM

                                      Not to question Pepin, but this seems like an awfuly long process.

                                      1. re: jhopp217
                                        bushwickgirl Dec 3, 2010 06:54 AM

                                        That's because he's Jacques.;)

                                        1. re: jhopp217
                                          seedyone Mar 5, 2013 08:29 AM

                                          I guess my attention to detail does make this sound like a lengthy process, but it's not. The pinhole to let out the air out is easily done w/a map pin & results in a picture perfect cooked egg. (Would Jacques have it any other way?)

                                          The other steps are not that much more time consuming than any other method & cooling the eggs under running water & ice will be quicker than letting them sit for 15 Min.

                                          1. re: seedyone
                                            katz66 Mar 5, 2013 08:48 AM

                                            I have used the pinhole when I really need a perfectly centered yolk. Also need to turn the egg a little in the first few moments of boiling water.

                                          2. re: jhopp217
                                            Bada Bing Oct 6, 2013 07:22 AM

                                            The process of using the drained pan itself as a device for shaking the eggs and cracking the shells has been very effective for me. In itself, it takes very little time, and much less than treating the eggs individually. I haven't tried the second recommended point of reeling a "belt" of shell from a particular point. Hasn't been necessary.

                                            However, I have to say that this is one area of cooking in which I have never been able to find a guaranteed easy, good outcome all the time. Regardless of egg age, how cooked, etc., there is always a "here we go" feeling when it comes to peeling eggs and seeing how they'll behave.

                                            1. re: Bada Bing
                                              John E. Oct 6, 2013 11:41 AM

                                              Have you tried the steaming method? I was skeptical, but I am a total convert.

                                              1. re: John E.
                                                katz66 Oct 6, 2013 12:03 PM

                                                How do you time it for softboil?

                                                1. re: katz66
                                                  John E. Oct 6, 2013 03:27 PM

                                                  I guess you would have to experiment. I've never done soft boiled but I seem to remember somebody explaining the method on this thread:

                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/777314

                                                  I don't know how many soft cooked eggs you do at a time, but since my wife and I are the only soft egg eaters I've used an easier method. I take an egg right out of the refrigerator and wrap it in aluminum foil (not heavy duty) then I place it in a large coffee mug and fill it with water. Then it goes into the microwave on high for 6 minutes. I usually do two mugs with one egg at a time. I think if you tried to do many in one bowl of water the timing would be off. The reason this works is that the egg is protected from the microwaves by the foil. The foil can go into the microwave without a problem because it is underwater and cannot arc. As you probably know, if you put a whole egg into the microwave on a plate it would explode. It doesn't in this case because it is being cooked by the heat of the water and not the microwaves.

                                                  1. re: John E.
                                                    katz66 Oct 7, 2013 06:20 PM

                                                    Wow I an going to try that. Thanks

                                                2. re: John E.
                                                  Bada Bing Oct 6, 2013 06:44 PM

                                                  Never tried steaming. How do you do that?

                                                  1. re: Bada Bing
                                                    John E. Oct 6, 2013 08:36 PM

                                                    Check out the thread in my above post, but I'll explain what I do. We have an 8 quart kettle with a strainer insert for cooking pasta. I put about an inch of water in the kettle and get it boiling with a lid. Meanwhile I put a dozen eggs in the strainer (eggs right out of the fridge).

                                                    When the water is boiling, I put the eggs in, put the lid on, turn down the heat to medium, and steam for about 13 minutes. I put water and ice in the sink, and after steaming for 13 minutes, I put the eggs in the ice bath for about 5 minutes. I pull them out and lay them on a towel on the counter. Since I learned about this method last year I have never have cooked eggs in water.

                                                    I also tried steaming eggs in one of those collapsable steamers, and worked just as well, but just not as convenient.

                                                    1. re: John E.
                                                      s
                                                      Springhaze2 Oct 6, 2013 08:55 PM

                                                      So then you need to wash an 8 quart kettle and strainer by hand rather than using a smaller pot that might fit into the dishwasher. I don't get the convenience aspect in your method.

                                                      It's really all about the freshness of the eggs.....

                                                      1. re: Springhaze2
                                                        John E. Oct 11, 2013 09:33 PM

                                                        When I steam hard cook eggs, I usually cook a dozen at a time. The clean up isn't a big deal.

                                                      2. re: John E.
                                                        johnb Oct 11, 2013 02:49 PM

                                                        John E is correct. Steaming is the way to go, and like him I tried it and am a total convert. Two additions to his points:

                                                        1. Going to the OP, steamed eggs are, in my experience, far easier to peel than boiled eggs. Even nearly fresh eggs peel fairly well when steamed.

                                                        2. I find steaming is not as difficult as suggested. I generally use a small pot for as few as I want to do and use a collapsible steamer. Or the ultimate in ease is to simply put about 1/2 inch of water in the pot, put in the eggs, bring up to heat and steam away. 10-11 minutes does the trick. I then simply run the pot full of cold water (ice is fine if you have a commercial ice maker, but it's really not necessary).

                                                        Never boil an egg. Steam it.

                                            2. katz66 Dec 4, 2010 05:01 AM

                                              Make sure your eggs are at least a week old before you boil them. I also crack them before I put them in cold water after they are boiled. That lets a little water get in under the shell hopefully, I also use a wet teaspoon to work in under the membrain to help get the shell off and keep dipping the egg in water to get the water under the shell. It works for me. Good luck. 'This is a short cut to Jacuques work.'

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: katz66
                                                katz66 Mar 5, 2013 05:38 AM

                                                Also I think you get tuff whites if you boil them for 13 or 16 imnutes. Also green ring around the yolk. I really have found boil for three minutes turn off and let sit for 15 minutes. Tender white and done yolk. Also can make soft boiled if Comes to boil for one minute and turn off for three and peel with cold water. Must be an egg over a week old.

                                              2. Caroline1 Dec 4, 2010 12:56 PM

                                                Well, looky here: http://www.culinarycookware.com/boile... See what I found browsing the web! It seems the venerable Matfer Bourgeat of France may have come up with a solution to our problems! Check it out, and it's not expensive. Attach it to your kitchen faucet and use water pressure to blow the egg out! Makes sense. But does it work? If you're the first to try, please tell! I've got to buy my way through a broken sprinkler system, and blown AV receiver, AND Christmas shopping before I can buy any more toys for me! <sigh>

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: Caroline1
                                                  momskitchen Dec 4, 2010 01:11 PM

                                                  This method has worked for me for ultra fresh eggs.....but the best thing is to buy not so fresh eggs from 7-11 a gas station. I only buy super fresh eggs to eat, but for making deviled eggs or pickled eggs, I always get my eggs at a liquor store/gas station and they are already old when I get them and they come out great every time! But if you have fresh eggs....try this out...it works, too.

                                                  According to the Georgia Egg Commission, the following method of hard-cooking facilitates peeling of ultra fresh eggs. Make a pinhole in the large end of the egg, place the eggs in a single layer in a saucepan, and cover with cold water to an inch above the layer of eggs. Place a lid on the pan and bring eggs to a boil. Remove the pan of eggs from the burner, leaving the cover in place, and allow to sit for 15-18 minutes, adjusting time up or down 3 minutes for larger or smaller eggs. Immediately remove eggs from the pan of hot water with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water for one minute. In the meantime, bring hot water to simmering. After one minute in ice water remove eggs back to the simmering water for ten seconds. The ten second interval is important because this allows the shell to expand without expanding the rest of the egg. Peel immediately by cracking the shells of the egg all over. Roll each egg gently between hands to loosen the shell. Peel, starting at the large end of the egg. The peeling may take place under cold running water to help wash the shell off the egg and to minimize the shell breaking into the white.

                                                  1. re: Caroline1
                                                    ChowFun_derek Dec 5, 2010 10:24 AM

                                                    Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't.......

                                                    1. re: ChowFun_derek
                                                      Caroline1 Dec 5, 2010 11:44 AM

                                                      Thanks! I don't have to mail order to get a method that only works sometimes. I already have that for free...! '-)

                                                  2. jfood Dec 4, 2010 02:45 PM

                                                    i must lead an egg-chanted life.

                                                    all these tips may work or they may not but i'm really into the KISS method and it has worked forever.

                                                    1 - cook the eggs, i really do not care about age since i have done this with fresh and older
                                                    2 - pour out hot water, fill with cold water
                                                    3 - start immediately by taking one egg, crack all the way around the equator
                                                    4 - crack on the flat end where there is the membrane
                                                    5 - peel from bottom to top
                                                    6 - place under cold running water while you slide the rest of the shelll off around the equator.

                                                    place in another bowl of cold water

                                                    30+ years and probably 98-99% good-lookers

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: jfood
                                                      Caroline1 Dec 4, 2010 05:50 PM

                                                      One question. Step 5. Which end are you calling the top and which end are you calling the bottom? I've always called the large end the top and the pointy end the bottom. Are you going to confuse me on this one? '-)

                                                      1. re: Caroline1
                                                        jfood Dec 5, 2010 03:39 AM

                                                        c

                                                        you know i like analogies so think back to SNL and the cone head with their nice tapered tops. the sliimer top is what i call the top and the flatter end the bottom. so the end that has that little air chamber is the bottom

                                                        1. re: jfood
                                                          Caroline1 Dec 5, 2010 05:42 AM

                                                          hmmmmmmmmm.... When I was growing up, in our barnyard it was the pointy end that almost always came out first. Not every time, but most of the time, so that made the pointy end the bottom. AND if you store eggs long term pointy end up, they will go bad faster than eggs stored pointy end down. So for me, once again that makes the pointy end the bottom! Yes! When I was a kid I was rude and intrusive with our chickens. But I did try to look it up in a book before I insisted the chickens show me. What can I say? I was a curious kid. Okay. Peculiar too. That's a given.

                                                    2. l
                                                      Lisa H. Dec 5, 2010 06:38 PM

                                                      I steam my eggs, they turn out just to my liking. Put the eggs in a single layer over a steam rack in a pot (or a pasta cooker), put water in just like steaming (don't let the eggs touch them). Turn on the heat, cover and immediately set the timer for 19 minutes (for large eggs). Have an ice bath ready and when the time is up put the eggs in the ice bath. To peel (whether warm or cold), roll them on the counter to break the shell, and peel. Mine come off in very easily

                                                      1. n
                                                        NJP Dec 5, 2010 06:52 PM

                                                        I agree the key is using eggs at least a week old. However, I strongly recommend using an electric egg cooker. You will get perfectly boiled eggs every time. I received one as a wedding gift 53 years ago and have worn out three since then. When I got this gift the giver told me I would probably think it was a weird gift, but I would love it! So true. I gave one to my daughter when she got married and have given them to friends through the years. It's not an expensive appliance and doesn't take up much space in a cupboard. Macy's and Williams Sonoma both promoted them this year.

                                                        1. tzakiel Dec 5, 2010 07:18 PM

                                                          We have been sticking to julias method religiously. Boil water first, x-large eggs in for 13 mins exactly. remove and lightly crack with a spoon, then run under cold water and peel. Has worked just great.

                                                          1. m
                                                            mmonte Mar 3, 2013 12:00 PM

                                                            I bought a dozen and a half of eggs. Last week I boiled the dickens out of six for about 12 minutes and submerged in cold water for 10 mins- no problem peeling from shell. This week from same carton so not as fresh, I slow boiled because I had more time and that's what the experts say to do. Submerged for same time and had a heck of a time peeling them without the whites breaking apart. I think from now on it is boiling at full tilt for me.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: mmonte
                                                              l
                                                              LovesToCook08 Mar 5, 2013 05:27 AM

                                                              I'm a nutrtion student and took a food science class. One of the chapters covered eggs. Amoung uses for eggs, it stated to gently place your eggs in boiling water and turn down to a simmer. I live at 6000 feet so I need to let them cook longer, about 16 minutes. They peels soooo nicely.

                                                            2. h
                                                              harleyjt Oct 3, 2013 12:27 PM

                                                              I just tried this trick IT WORKS!!!put a little olive oil/oil on you fingers, the peel slides right off.

                                                              Actaully works well when peeling garlic also, you do no ahve the sticky mess when peeling the garlic

                                                              1. John E. Oct 5, 2013 09:22 PM

                                                                My advice is to skip all of the suggestions made thus far in how to hard cook eggs so that they will peel eaily. pssst...never actually boil eggs.

                                                                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/777314

                                                                1. Delucacheesemonger Oct 6, 2013 03:21 AM

                                                                  l use a device that pierces the shell with a needle on both ends of the egg, works fine with that almost regardless of how l cook them.

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                                                                    katz66 Oct 6, 2013 05:36 AM

                                                                    And whee do you buy that item? Old effs are better too.

                                                                    1. re: katz66
                                                                      Delucacheesemonger Oct 6, 2013 07:12 AM

                                                                      Both ebay and amazon list them under 'egg piercer'.

                                                                  2. C. Hamster Oct 6, 2013 03:43 AM

                                                                    There is one answer: hard boil the OLDEST eggs you can find. That aren't skunked, that is.

                                                                    6 Replies
                                                                    1. re: C. Hamster
                                                                      s
                                                                      Springhaze2 Oct 6, 2013 04:02 PM

                                                                      I raise chickens, I agree. If the eggs are too fresh they are hard to peel. If you are buying from a supermarket you have no way of knowing how old they are. They might be a week or a month old before they arrive in your store. The "use by" date tells you nothing. For boiling I use eggs that are at least 3 weeks old. I record the "collected on" date on the cartons.

                                                                      Steaming vs putting in water and bringing them up to a boil and turning off the heat is basically the same thing and turn out the same results. I do mine for 14 minutes. It comes down to the age and quality of the egg.

                                                                      If you are using fresh/free range eggs, the hens might need to have an added calcium source to make the shells harder. The harder the shell, the easier to peel.

                                                                      1. re: Springhaze2
                                                                        John E. Oct 6, 2013 06:32 PM

                                                                        "Steaming vs putting in water and bringing them up to a boil and turning off the heat is basically the same thing and turn out the same results."

                                                                        That has not been my experience. I always used to use the latter method and it was hit and miss as to the ease with which the eggshells were removed. I find steaming eggs instead produces a shell that slips off easily for every egg cooked in this manner.

                                                                        I agree that a customer never really knows how old the eggs are when purchased from a grocer. However I never look at the sell buy date, I look at the date stamped on the end of the carton that tells when the eggs were packaged.

                                                                        1. re: John E.
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                                                                          Springhaze2 Oct 6, 2013 07:10 PM

                                                                          Egg packaging rules and sell-by dates vary by state. I have never seen a date stamp on the end of the carton that tells when the eggs were packaged. Even if there was a date the eggs were packaged, there is no way to know when it actually came out of a chicken.

                                                                          1. re: Springhaze2
                                                                            John E. Oct 6, 2013 08:50 PM

                                                                            You are correct about not really knowing when the eggs came out of the chicken. I read somewhere about egg repackaging, which is mixing in older, unsold eggs with eggs more recently layed.

                                                                            Check out the end of an egg carton. In Minnesota, they all have a stamp with a three digit number. For instance, a carton of eggs packaged tommorow will have the number 280 stamped on the end of the carton.

                                                                            1. re: John E.
                                                                              s
                                                                              Springhaze2 Oct 6, 2013 09:03 PM

                                                                              I don't have dates on my egg cartons, until I write the date on there. My eggs come from the chickens that we raise. They live free-range on our property.

                                                                              I have lived in NJ and now in NC and there are no other dates required other then the "sell by" date. It varies by STATE.

                                                                              1. re: Springhaze2
                                                                                John E. Oct 6, 2013 10:08 PM

                                                                                I'm not disagreeing with you in any way. Don't be so quick to be offended. I think it's great to have hens to have fresh eggs.

                                                                                In Minnesota, that three digit number is reqired on all packaged eggs sold commercialmy. It is fairly reliable in determining when tbe eggs were packaged.

                                                                    2. e
                                                                      engie Oct 6, 2013 05:05 PM

                                                                      I know the frustration, one of my favorite casual appetizers is deviled eggs.

                                                                      Buy older eggs, something about the inner part of the egg shrinking with time.

                                                                      Leave them out the night before boiling

                                                                      After boiling crackle the shell, then let them sit in water, this will allow water to seep in between the shell and the white part. Start peeling at the pole with the largest space gap.

                                                                      I think i learned these things from Melinda Lee - they work.
                                                                      Good luck.

                                                                      http://www.melindalee.com/resources/r...

                                                                      1. c
                                                                        ChervilGeorge Oct 7, 2013 11:46 AM

                                                                        I have not had a problem with peeling since I switched to adding eggs to already simmering water and then pull them out at 9 minutes. If I'm too lazy to run under cold water to cool the eggs, I'll pull them at 8 minutes and let them sit on the counter cooking further. I like a softer yolk. This is still firm enough for egg salad or deviled eggs.

                                                                        The only problem I ever had was an egg that was laid the morning I cooked it. That one was a little more difficult. I've had no problem with eggs even a few days old.

                                                                        I used to have trouble all the time when I did the "place eggs in pot with cold water, bring to a boil, remove from hit and let sit". This method always gave me green yolks and eggs that were difficult to peel. I have not had a green yolk or trouble peeling since the simple method I mentioned. I don't even bother punching the end with a thumb tack any more.

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: ChervilGeorge
                                                                          c
                                                                          Clams047 Oct 7, 2013 01:46 PM

                                                                          "I have not had a problem with peeling since I switched to adding eggs to already simmering water and then pull them out at 9 minutes." "I used to have trouble all the time when I did the "place eggs in pot with cold water, bring to a boil, remove from hit and let sit".

                                                                          My experience exactly, except I very lightly simmer them for 14 minutes before plunging them into cold water (right out of the refrigerator). Cooking any longer tends to result in green yolks. Cracking into small pieces is typically better than trying to crack off large pieces. Adding salt, etc seems to have no effect for me.

                                                                        2. s
                                                                          Spelunk Oct 11, 2013 08:34 PM

                                                                          I tried a technique I had seen on the Web, and it worked like a charm!

                                                                          Heat your oven to 325F, then either place the eggs directly on the oven racks, or in a muffin pan. Bake for 30 minutes and then dump the eggs into a bowl of iced water.

                                                                          When eggs are cool, it's all done.

                                                                          Seemed to work perfectly; no sign of either a dark ring around the yolks, or any discoloration of the yolks..

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Spelunk
                                                                            John E. Oct 11, 2013 09:37 PM

                                                                            But you need to turn your oven on for over 30 minutes. If this method worked as easilly as you say, then it migh be an interesting diversion in the cold months. Once I find an efficient way to cook something, I usually stick with it.

                                                                            1. re: John E.
                                                                              s
                                                                              Spelunk Oct 12, 2013 08:00 AM

                                                                              But I needed the oven for other purposes in any case....

                                                                          2. b
                                                                            blackpointyboots Oct 12, 2013 08:51 PM

                                                                            The most sure fire way I have found to boil eggs is in my rice cooker. Fill the rice pot half way with water. Eggs go in the steamer basket. Run it for the rice cycle. When it stops pull the eggs out and put into a bowl of ice water. I leave them for maybe 30 min in the water. They peel easily every time.

                                                                            I have a cheap rice cooker from Target, not one of the expensive fuzzy logic ones.

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: blackpointyboots
                                                                              katz66 Oct 13, 2013 05:52 AM

                                                                              WOW I'm going to try that..

                                                                            2. iL Divo Oct 14, 2013 07:20 AM

                                                                              was watching IG the other day and she was making HB eggs. her timing and way of cooking then peeling them is as different as everyone else on the planet. as many times as I've hoped for a full proof way, even when a few batches come out actually really easy, I'm convinced there are too many variables, unless you're a machine, sadly.... perfection eludes.

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: iL Divo
                                                                                jayt90 Oct 14, 2013 04:52 PM

                                                                                I use a pressure cooker. It just needs 1" water, a dozen eggs, and about 8 minutes cooking time after it comes to pressure.
                                                                                Cool quickly under a stream of water, or leave to to cool. Doesn't matter. Each egg, even fresh eggs, will separate from the shell easily. I never get green surfaces on the yolks.

                                                                                Try it with just a few eggs, to get the timing right.

                                                                                Once you've mastered PC hard boiled eggs, go on to PC steamed lobster. You'll never turn back!

                                                                              2. b
                                                                                birdmonkey Oct 15, 2013 11:08 AM

                                                                                I poke a hole in the fat end of the egg with a pin before cooking. then soak in ice water until cool enough to handle and peel right away. works wonderfully 95% of the time. Occasionally there will be an egg that doesn't cooperate.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: birdmonkey
                                                                                  iL Divo Oct 17, 2013 06:35 AM

                                                                                  I'm gonna try that next time.
                                                                                  I know I've read it before somewhere.
                                                                                  it's no fun to think about making a lot of hard boiled eggs for deviled eggs and think about the concern and time it's gonna take to peel the dang buggars.

                                                                                2. k
                                                                                  Kreis6 Oct 30, 2013 08:20 AM

                                                                                  its very easy. the eggs dont "cooperate" if there to young.

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