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Soft boiled eggs

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi there, 
I have followed the instructions from this blog post, and I am not perfectly satisfied.
Every time, either the yolk is not runny enough for my taste, or i get a thin layer undercooked white, around the yolk. ("undercooked" = it's not completely set)
Is that unavoidable? If not, what might I be doing wrong?
Does anyone else encounter the same problem?
One limitation i have, is that I can't cook eggs at home (I live with vegan friends), and at work we only have an induction hob, whose temperature is not stable. If I set it to 100 degrees (celsius), then the water temperature will oscillate between 75 and 90. Might that be the cause of my problem? it is a cause of unpredictability: I will never get exactly the same result - but i think it's close enough every time. But I don't know if it could also be the cause of this thin layer of undercooked white.
Another problem that I encounter, is when the yolk is not well centered. In this case, if it's near the very bottom of the egg for example, I will get the bottom of the yolk overcooked.
Any method to get a well centered yolk?
I have found this thread and tried foodnfoto's technique of stirring the egg, but it came largely undercooked, perhaps because when it's moving around, it doesn't absorb heat as fast as when it's immobile.
I will try turning all eggs upside down in the box, and will report my results here.
post #2 of 7
What kind of he77 do you live in where you can't cook eggs at home and ar work you can't even boil water!?
If you gave us a little more info about the timing and technique your using, also sounds like your either using very old eggs or the shells are cracking. At that water temp it might be easier to do poached eggs
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

I can set the induction hob to a higher temperature, but in this article I read that higher temperatures overcook the white and make it rubbery. They cook the eggs at 80 degrees (celsius).


My problem is that I cannot have a constant temperature: it oscillates (for example between 75 and 90).



Sometimes I use Medium eggs and sometimes Large, and I get the same problem with both.

The eggs might be old - I don't know how to check. How will this affect the way they cook?



Here is how I proceed:

 - I keep my eggs in the fridge (guessing that a higher temperature shock will make it easier to peel the eggs later).

 - I put them in this water (oscillating between 75 and 90) for exactly 8 minutes for Large eggs (7:45 for Medium).

 - Then i put them for 1:30 minutes in a pot full of tap water, and directly under the tap where I let a thin flow of water come down, so the water does not heat up.

 - I break the shell with a tea spoon, cracking the bottom first, and then tapping all around the shell to crack it.

 - I peel it, trying to break the thin inside skin with my fingers, so it lifts the shell easily: the egg underneath is completely smooth; I just slide my finger and the shell comes up.

 - And I cut it in half on the plate


The centre of the egg is still warm at that stage, which is what I want, and the yolk is still very liquid.

My problem is as I said: I get a thin layer of undercooked white.

If I cook the egg for 8:30, then the yolk is too cooked for me.

I don't have my notes with me here (they are at work), but I think I have not tried 8:15 before posting here (I've tried many different temperatures, from the fridge or ambient temperature, etc). Perhaps it is the solution and I should have waited before posting... I will try it very soon.


I just got frustrated, because any method I use, I always end up with either a bit of undercooked white, or overcooked yolk.


Especially when the yolk is not centered: the part near the surface gets very overcooked.

post #4 of 7
Try doing a five or six minute egg with boiling water, i think your getting enough heat. Actually probably 4 or 5 since you actually want it runny. I would recommend working some ice into your chill.
I think that by cooking it more gradually, the heat slowly warms the whole egg rathrr than cooking from the outside in. Does that make sense? So, a higher temp will set the white faster before the yolk heats up.
post #5 of 7
Oh, and because water can't go above 100, you can crank that puppy a little higher to make sure it maintains a boil. I always salt the water; i've heatd baking soda in the water makes it easier to peel. Thats apocriphal, though.
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Cheers. I will try boiling water and check by myself whether the white does get rubbery like they say in this article.

What you say makes sense. With a higher temperature the temperature gradient is higher: the difference of temperature is higher between the outer layers and the center.
I guess it also means that the yolk in the very center can be more liquid, while the white around it is a bit more cooked. Which is what I want. It should work...

I just trusted this article, which says that over 80 degrees, the white becomes rubbery. Has anyone experienced this?
post #7 of 7

(1)  Look into getting yourself an egg cup and cutter.  You'd probably be the only one in your town with one, and they are kind of fun to fool with.  Very British.


(2)  Scientifically speaking, the fumes from a boiled egg should be vastly different from that of second-hand smoke.  Egg molecules probably don't migrate well in the atmosphere of your rooms, so you may be able to convince your roomies they are safe.  Don't over cook, though (sulfur fumes).


Just joshing.  It's all trial and error.  Start with egg at room temperature and simmer three minutes and see what it does.


Try this page at Amazon:

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