Eggs: Perfect Hard-cooked Eggs

This time of year I get a lot of e-mails asking me about the special technique for hard cooking eggs that I learned from Julia Child. When I was writing Sara’s Moulton’s Everyday Family Dinners, I made the process even easier and here it is:

Sara’s Hard-cooked Eggs

This is my streamlined version of Julia Child’s fool-proof method of hard-cooking eggs.  In a nutshell, Julia figured out that the way to hard boil an egg is to stop short of actually boiling it.  Boil it and all you’ll do is guarantee that the thing ends up damn near as hard and rubbery as a hockey puck. Instead, you start the eggs in cold water, bring them almost to a boil, pull them off the heat, and then cover and set them aside while they finish cooking.  Finally, you plunge them into ice water and let them cool completely before peeling, a little trick that eliminates the nasty green line that would otherwise appear between the whites and the yolk.  Do it this way and you’ll turn out perfect hard-cooked eggs every time.

Large eggs, at room temperature

Place the desired number of eggs in a saucepan large enough for them to fit in a single layer and add enough cold water to cover them by 2 inches. Bring the water to a boil over medium heat.

Remove the saucepan from the heat, cover it, and set it aside for 13 minutes.

Transfer the eggs to a bowl of half ice and half water. Cool them completely; then refrigerate or use as directed in a recipe.

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