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Old 10-02-2005, 08:26 AM   #1
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Simply Ming's fried eggs

On PBS yesterday Ming had Sara Moulton as a guest. He was showing a tofu based holandaise sauce and was making several egg dishes with the sauce. Sara came on near the end of the show and when she started helping Ming she made a comment about how some people cook eggs too brown around the edges. Ming was using an All-Clad 8" nonstick frying pan and must have had it on high heat because when he put the egg in the pan it started boiling in the oil. He then put a lid on it and probably cooked it a total of 2 minutes and it did come out brown around the edge's or hard fried. Ming said his mother always used a wok to fry eggs and that he liked them that way. Sara didn't make a big deal about it but I'm forever curious about the proper way to cook eggs, and why chef's use such high heat on nonstick pans when the maufacturers say not to go over medium heat. I know they are pressed for time and they dont have to pay for the pans so maybe thats why. Does anyone know how Sara would have fried an egg?

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Old 10-02-2005, 10:15 AM   #2
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The absolute best way to fry and egg is to make it the way you like it. Here are some options. They come from my father, my step-father, my wife, and from me, in that order.

1. Cook up some sausage, link or patties, your choice. Remove to a plate. Crack two eggs into the same pan used to fry the suasage (heavy cast iron of course), sprinkle with salt and pepper. Use a spatula to splash the hot grease over the egg until the membrane that covers the yolk turns pink. Plate with toast & butter, and the sausage.

2. Cook up four pieces of bacon, then follow the above rules.

3. Melt butter in a heavy pan over medium-low heat. Add the egg/s to the pan and cook until the white begins to set on top. Flip the egg and cook until the yolk begins to harden around the edges. Serve with freshly made hash browns and lightly crisped bacon.

4. Melt butter over medium heat in a heavy, cast-iron or stainless steel pan. Place two jumbo eggs in the pan and cook until the white is nearly set. Turn the heat to high and place 3 tbs. water in the pan. Cover and cook for an additional 30 seconds. The steam will cook the top of the egg and give you a very tender egg-white. Serve on top of whole wheat toast with your favorite meat on the side. A nice piece of good rib-steak goes very well with these eggs. But usually, I opt for bacon or sausage.

Stevie; as you gain more cooking experience, you will learn that there is rarely a "right" way to cook anything. There are usually several different techniques, all of which will give you satisfactory results. You just need to decide which ones you like best. After all, it's you who will be eating the end results. And if you have a family, you will learn to tailor your cooking techniques to achive the desired foods your family enjoys. Usually, I tailor individual plates, wherever possible, to the likes of individual family members.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
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Old 10-02-2005, 11:14 AM   #3
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Number 4 is my favorite way, but I use a Calaphon skillet.
The eggs turn out so pretty, and not greasy at all, the way my mom used to fix them.

When I was in high school, I used to love the way my friend's mom fixed eggs too. They had "fringes" on them, little brown crispy edges from being fried in bacon grease.
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Old 10-02-2005, 10:56 PM   #4
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I shared a house with a guy who always cooked his eggs over searing hot heat. they had to be borwn all over!

The key is not to get the whites too hot as they will toughen up. Cooked gently, they wil set like a custard and remain soft and tender.
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Old 10-02-2005, 11:14 PM   #5
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I like my eggs blonde ... that means gently cooked. Omlettes are yellow and moist, fried eggs are cooked so the white is solid but the yolk quite runny. poached the same. hard boiled is about 5 minutes at the gentle boil, the five more off the heat then cool em down.

However, there are recipes for hard cooked fried eggs for sandwiches etc. Love those!
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Old 10-03-2005, 06:11 PM   #6
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Thanks for your replies. Goodweed, I've tried all of your methods and my eggs always come out sadly lacking (edible but not great). I like eggs sunny side up and not greasy, like restaurants do them. I haven't had much luck using my All-Clad SS pans either you have to use too much butter or grease so they wont stick and they still stick somewhat even at low heat. I just ordered an 8" All-Clad nonstick and it's gonna replace my 12" Calphalon nonstick as my go to egg pan. Winter is coming so when it cools down I'm gonna re-season my cast iron pans and I will try them as well.
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Old 10-04-2005, 05:30 PM   #7
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Stevie; The grills used in restaurants are made from stainless steel. They are thick, and hold heat well, just like a good cast-iron pan. Most restaurants now use cooking spray. They clean the grill surface until smooth, then spray on the oil. Shen they place the eggs, they crack them into a bowl before pouring them onto the grill. They flip once with a spatula that is long enoough to do the job well.

For a similar home experience, you must have a very well-seasoned cast-iron pan or griddle, or good stainless. But the techniques for cooking in these two vessels is different.

When using the cast iron, preheat the pan until water skitters accross its surface. Then spray with cooking oil, and turn down the heat.for tender eggs. Turn up the heat if you're going to baste them, steam them, or you want crispy edges. Salt only the egg tops, and before the white sets. Turn once with a good spatula and cook for about 30 seconds. Then plate the eggs along with toast and your favorite sides.

For the stainless steel pans, heat the pan before adding any type of fat, be it spray-oil, butter, bacon greas, shortening, etc. If you heat the fat with the pan, foods will stick. When the pan is hot and oiled, wipe execess oil from the cooking surface. Add the eggs and lightly salt again. Tuen when the top is nearly set and cook for another 30 seconds or so. Plate and eat.

Good luck. You'll get it down.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
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Old 10-04-2005, 06:34 PM   #8
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Thanks Goodweed. I have Pam cooking spray but never use it unless I bake. I think I've read somewhere that it isn't good to use it on certain pans. I'm sure your right that some professional kitchens use it. I could try it on cast iron but I plan on getting them well seasoned soon maybe I wont need it. If they still stick after seasoning I will try the Pam. Cool idea about wiping the excess grease out of SS before putting the egg in.
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Old 10-06-2005, 10:19 PM   #9
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I've finally learned how to make a good egg in my SS frying pan without it sticking. I made two just practicing and they were great.
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