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!

Pumpkin Bread

The pumpkin obsession continues! I’ve eaten pumpkin scones, pumpkin sushi, pumpkin pie, pumpkin fro-yo, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin cookies and pumpkin curry this Fall. Maybe it’s because I’m an October baby, or maybe it’s because I love vegetables more than the average person, or maybe it’s because pumpkins are just so dang tasty. Whatever the reason, I can’t get enough. Ergo, pumpkin bread for a breakfast with friends on Saturday morning.

This recipe is dead easy, and you’ll be able to whip up it up in minutes. It’s great fresh from the oven with hot coffee, or heated up the next day with…coffee. Can you tell what I’ve been having for breakfast this week?

PUMPKIN BREAD

*Note, this is a full recipe and makes two pans. I halved it and made one loaf since I’ll be out of town this week. I have no idea if this bread freezes well or not, since I’ve always consumed it right away, like the fat kid I am. If you try it, let me know?

Ingredients:

. 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

. 2 teaspoons baking soda

. 1 teaspoon baking powder

. 3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

. 1 teaspoon salt

. 3 cups white sugar

. 1 cup vegetable oil

. 4 eggs

. 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree

. 1/2 cup water

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9×5 inch loaf pans. Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, beat together sugar, oil, eggs, and pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture alternately with water. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans.

3. Bake in the preheated oven for about an hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Slice and serve!