Photo Credit: Casey Barber
You don’t need to know the diner lingo (Adam and Eve on a raft? Shingle with a shimmy and a shake?) to become a short-order specialist at home. Simply master three basic egg cooking techniques: poached, scrambled and fried. To poach an egg, heat a pot of water with a splash of white vinegar (this helps the egg whites set) over medium heat, just until small bubbles form on the bottom of the pan and barely break the surface of the water. Crack an egg into a small heatproof ramekin or bowl. With the dowel end of a spatula or wooden spoon, stir the hot water to make a whirlpool effect in the simmering water and pour the egg into the center of the whirlpool. Cook for 3-4 minutes, just until the yolks are set to your liking, then remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate.
To make scrambled eggs, heat a nonstick pan over medium-low heat and add a pat of butter. Beat eggs with a little milk or cream to add moisture and richness, then pour the eggs into the greased, heated pan. Stir gently with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula until the eggs set into creamy mounds.
To make a fried egg, heat a nonstick pan over medium-high heat and add a pat of butter. When the butter melts and foams, crack an egg directly into the pan and cook until the whites are completely opaque and the yolk just starts to set. Gently flip the egg and cook briefly for an over easy egg.
Classic Fried Egg Sandwich
1 English muffin or large biscuit
1 large egg
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 thin slices Cheddar or Muenster cheese, large enough to cover the biscuit
1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste
1. Lightly toast the muffin or biscuit in a toaster oven until just barely browned.
2. Heat the butter and oil in a large cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium low heat until the butter is melted. When the butter starts to sizzle, crack the egg into the skillet. Cook for 1 minute, letting the white firm up before shifting slightly to the side.
3. Add the toasted biscuit halves, cut side down, to the skillet. Cook the halves for 20-30 seconds, just long enough to sop up some of the butter. Transfer to a plate and flip the egg back into the center of the skillet.
4. Place one slice of cheese over the flipped egg and the other slice on one of the biscuit halves. Cook the egg until done to your liking (undercook a bit if you’ll be reheating later) and slide on top of the cheese-covered biscuit half so the egg is layered between both slices of cheese.
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