Perfect Poached Eggs

I’ve been embroiled in a project for awhile now. Nope, not this one. One about eggs. Those tiny roundish things that I typically let spoil at the back of my refrigerator because I don’t bake enough or quiche enough or whatever else it is people do with eggs…enough. It’s a dilemma.

The thing is, I don’t really like eggs. My dad is a champion omelet maker, but I generally turn them down in favor of his even more champion hash browns. I’m from Colorado and I’ve never even had a Denver omelet, such is my disdain for omelets. Scrambled eggs make me weak in the knees (in a bad way) and do not even get me started on the atrocity that is a McMuffin. Eeewww.

But. Ohhhh but. A poached egg, soft and pliable, daintily rubbery, with an exploding yolk the color of hot sun and a woman’s sundress and that one yellow croquet ball that every set has, or the first daffodils of spring. That beautiful center, which many people call runny, but a description which I find both perplexing (eggs, not having any legs, cannot run) and disgusting (runny noses come instantly to mind), so I prefer to just think of a pleasantly liquid yolk as simply that. Liquid. That, I am all about. If only I knew how to make it.

Thus, the project: to make the perfect poached egg. Deb has a great tutorial, as does the most recent edition of Bon Apetit, which showed up in my mailbox all splashy-like a few weeks ago, parading it’s poached egg perfection in my face.

Boyfriend and I set out to master this process once and for all, and I think we’ve found the perfect solution. Now, onto quiche!

PERFECT POACHED EGGS

Ingredients:

. One egg

. Boiling water

. Splash of white vinegar

. Freshly ground black pepper

Instructions:

1. Fill a small pot 2/3s full and set it on to boil. Add a small splash of white vinegar.

2. Once the water is just barely boiling (not a rolling boil), use your spatula to stir in into a whirlpool. As the water spins, crack the egg into the water and watch in amazement as the yolk and white do some crazy Cirque-du-Soleil business swirling and dipping in the pan.

A quick note: some people – in fact, most – recommend cracking the egg into a small bowl, then sliding it from bowl to pot. I have tried this, and I always, always break the yolk cracking it into the bowl. So, I crack straight into the pot and hope for the best.

3. Leave the temp on high and set your alarm for three minutes and 25 seconds. I have no idea why, but on a gas stove setting of 7 in my little house, 3:25 yields a perfect flowing yolk and a solidified white.

4. At 3:25, use a slotted spoon to remove the egg and either let it dry on a paper bowl or just hold it over the pan until all the water drains out.

5. I like to put mine on toast, add a little dash of black pepper and a swirl of balsamic (oddly) for a nice zing to counteract that whole mouth feeling, the fullness of the egg. If you’ve done it well, the gel-ishness will hold to the last bite.

Do it!

On Disappointment

I’m in the middle of a huge project right now – that secret one I can’t really talk about yet – and I’m feeling a little…meh. Not about the project as a whole. That, I’m excited about, and I think it’s something that needs to be out there in the world. But in the current iteration, I’m feeling overwhelmed about the volume, a little sad about the content, and a little disappointed that I don’t feel I have the time and resources to make it as awesome as I know it can be.

This quote and resulting post made me feel infinitely better about all that. As Ira Glass, one of my creative idols and one of the more realistic and honest people in the business of creating, says:

“All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not.”

Isn’t it nice to say that out loud? I’m a creative person, I tried hard, and I made this thing, and then, this thing I made? This thing upon which I tried very hard? It sucks. At least, right now it sucks.

You guys, this thing I’m making right now? This thing that is slowly siphoning the life out of my other life, the life where I do laundry and take pictures and feed myself on a regular basis? Yeah. It sucks. It will get better, and that I can be sure of, but right now, it’s just not that good. And Ira says that’s okay. So for today, that is enough.

Friday Scraps

{Bubbles at Gloria Ferrer, in celebration of St. Patrick!}

. Art everyday. Impressive.

. Going to see him in concert in a few weeks and I could not be more excited!

. Doesn’t Christian Louboutin sound like the best friend a girl could have?

. Inside instruments

Who is PUMPED for The Hunger Games?! Dear boyfriend, the infamous Jo, and the infamous Jo’s dear boyfriend are going to Dosa for warm, spicy Indian food, and then snuggling down at the Sundance Kabuki theater to be swept up in the world of Panem – with a glass of wine in hand, of course!

I have ants in my pants just thinking about it.

Happy, happy weekend to you.

Minty Fresh

My deep love of antiquey, depression-era mint green is well documented (here, here, and allll over Pinterest!) so I’m quite excited to see this sweet, refreshing color coming down the runway and appearing in shop windows around San Francisco.

While I eagerly await the arrival of this beauty on my doorstep, I thought it would be fun to pull together some of the mintiest, freshest finds for Spring.

 

All images sourced via Pinterest.

A Fresh Take on Tuna

Tuna is a bit maligned, wouldn’t you agree? I’ve worked in three separate workplaces that have banned the warming of tuna in the microwaves, and though La Boulange’s (yes, I am addicted) tuna melt is infamously delicious and totally adds to the canon of tuna successes, a major pro in the pro/con tuna list of our lives, there are still more haters than lovers. Right? Right. This is my blog. Of course I’m right.

I’ve found that sometimes the haters have a legitimate argument in that a bad tuna salad can be gloppy, overly mayo’ed, and tasteless. Or, even worse, it’s sometimes served without any condimentary help, and is just straight up tuna, rendering the eater completely avoidable for the entire day, their breath smelling like a dirty foot, and such. YUM.

But I added an odd mix of vegetables and fruit (yes, fruit) and spice and sweetness today, and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised.

This recipe isn’t based off anyone else’s, nor has anyone verified it’s deliciousness except for me, so proceed with caution. Or, you know what? Don’t! Throw caution to the wind! Yeah, do that! Because you guys, we are friends now, right? And friends tell friends about awesome stuff to put their tuna salads.

You should probably make this tun-ight! Sorry, sorry. It’s just that I can’t really write about tuna with a straight face. And since you can’t see my face, I have to make bad puns, so you know I’m not taking this tu seriously. SORRY! GAH. I’m done. Go eat your samiches.

TUNA SALAD

Ingredients:

. 1 can of tuna (albacore in water is best, from a dolphin-safe purveyor)

. 1/4 cup of mayo

. 1 small handful of craisins

. 2 tablespoons of lemon juice

. fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

. 1/2 cup of peas

. 1 scallion

. 1/2 honey crisp apple, diced

Instructions:

If you have frozen peas, zap them in the microwave or on the stovetop for three minutes. While they’re heating, chop up the scallions and the apple and mix everything together in a large bowl.

Really, everything in this recipe is to taste, so be liberal (or not) with all the ingredients listed.

Toast up some bread (or, again, not) and make a sandwich! I like to eat them open-faced, so I can be as messy as possible, apparently? But perhaps you might add a top slice of bread, and you might be a little classier for it. Or, as with this entire recipe, you mightn’t. It’s entirely up to you.

Ten Minutes at the Movies

I love going to the movies. I don’t go very often, and I’m not good at going by myself, but when I do find myself in the theater, it’s such a treat to be swept away into whatever world is on the screen. This year it was particularly lovely to go to Hawaii with George Clooney, and to London with Michelle Williams. My life is tres glam, you know.

Sometimes, though, it goes beyond that, and movies are an inspiration.  Who hasn’t watched Roman Holiday and longed for a bit more freedom and fun a la the princess on her Vespa, or Pride and Prejudice, and took heart at Elizabeth Bennet’s high standards, her verve, her spunk?

One of the best things about the Internet is that it’s making way for small-scale filmmakers, mini-movies, and interesting subjects and ideas, a little pop of inspiration or beauty into an otherwise regular day.

I’d love to share some of the best little films I’ve seen lately:

Keep Calm and Carry On

Fresh Guacamole

The Power of Music

Baking Bread

Kony 2012

Street Skiing