I love “Joy of Cooking.” It makes my life easier every time I can’t remember what temperature to cook a baked potato or how to cooks eggs, and I love the style of writing and wonderful way the authors tell you everything you need to know and a few fun facts along the way. Check this verbiage on this amazing recipe:
“Poached eggs, unless made in individual molds – in which case cook them over – not in – boiling water – are apt to produce “streamers” that you may trim off with scissors before serving.
Grease the bottom of a 6- to 8-inch pot. Put in enough slightly salted water to fill to twice the depth of an egg. While the water is coming to a boil, break into a small bowl:
Swirl the water into a mad vortex with a wooden spoon. (Mad vortex?? Really? It has to be mad?) Drop the egg into the well formed in the center of the pot. The swirling water should round the egg. Reduce the heat. Simmer 4 to 5 minutes or let stand off the heat for 8 minutes. B this time the white should be firm and the yolk soft. Remove with a skimmer and drain well. If not using the egg immediately, plunge it at once into cold water to stop the cooking. Repeat the process for each egg. To reheat the eggs, drop them into hot -not boiling- water.”
And just in case you’d like a flattened egg,
“Put enough water in a shallow skillet to cover the eggs. Add:
1/2 tsp salt
Bring to a boil. Break into a saucer:
Take the skillet from the heat and slip he egg into the hot water. Repeat the process for as many eggs as you require. Let the eggs stand in hot water 3 to 5 minutes, or until the white is firm. Remove with a skimmer and drain well. To store for later use- but not later than 24 hours after the original cooking- put the poached eggs in a bowl of ice cold water in the refrigerator. This is the professional way to prepare eggs in advance for use the following day in Eggs Benedict. The heat from the platter, toast and sauce warms up the egg.
Photo credit: What’s Cooking America: Poached Eggs