The Complicated Task of Hard Boiling Eggs

I realize that I’m posting a lot about eggs and cooking, but I can’t help but mention this.

As I was perusing my new Joy of Cooking yesterday, I came across the fact that the method for hard boiling eggs that the new version recommends is different from the method that the old version recommended and different from any method I’ve tried myself. Last night my roommates wanted me to teach them how to hard boil eggs, so I decided to try the new method out.

I think many people consider hard boiling eggs to be a trivial kitchen endeavor requiring no skill or precision. I’ve thought so myself. However, many people use very different techniques. The hard boiled eggs last night were significantly better tasting than most that I have had in my life. So I think there’s more to hard boiling eggs than first meets the eye, and I think that it’s worth the extra effort to make them perfectly.

So here’s the new recipe from the Joy of Cooking website:

Place in a pot in a single layer:
Unshelled eggs
Cover them by 1 inch with:
Cold water
Put the pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Promptly remove the pot from the heat, cover, and let the eggs stand: 15 minutes for large eggs, 12 minutes for small and medium eggs, 18 minutes for extra-large and jumbo eggs. Eggs that are not room temperature will require an additional 2 minutes. When cooking is complete, run cold water over eggs to stop cooking.

The Joy of Cooking also recommended poking a hole through the end of the eggshell with a pin to prevent the eggs from breaking. I did so and didn’t have any break (though I don’t usually). The eggs last night were done all the way through and they seemed more moist and had better flavor than normal. I think I’m very accustomed to eating inferior, overcooked hard boiled eggs. When they are not overcooked they are pretty amazingly delectable.