Edited to add: Yes, I know technically these aren’t hard-boiled eggs, but I titled the post as I did so folks could search on hard boiled eggs and actually find it. Really, my version is easy to peel hard cooked eggs.
Eggs, particularly hard cooked eggs, are an easy and convenient way to get some extra protein in your brown-bag lunches. They’re self contained, travel well, and pack a solid 6 grams of protein in their 70 calorie package. I like to have one after a hard workout (another great post workout snack? Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Carbs, protein, and good fats from the nuts make for a great recovery food. Add in some delicious whole grain bread and you’ve got one of the most complete meals you can pack without refrigeration).
But we were talking about eggs, weren’t we?
The biggest problem I have with hard boiled eggs is that they are darn hard to peel. Inside the shell is a thin membrane that sticks to both the egg white and the shell after the egg is boiled. There are tricks all over the Internet for cooking eggs. Almost all of them recommend old eggs, which I always faithfully used, buying eggs weeks in advance from Skagit River Ranch or Stokesberry. Some have you cook the eggs with a teaspoon of vinegar in the water. Others have you place the cool eggs in cool water and bring the water up to temperature slowly. Still other recipes have you put room temperature eggs into simmering water. Old eggs, shocking boiled eggs in ice water… even cooking them twice (Julia Child’s method). I’ve tried all the tricks. Julia Child’s method came the closest to perfection. Unfortunately, it also took the longest to execute. Boiling, chilling, boiling again, chilling again… I bought new knitting needles in the foolish hope that I’d have time to make socks this year and I haven’t even had time to take the needles out of the package! I don’t have time to cook and chill and cook and chill just for some hard boiled eggs.
I just resigned myself to a life without deviled eggs. After all, a few chunks out of the hard boiled white doesn’t really affect my enjoyment of a hard boiled egg. But still, the egg shells taunted me. Every few months I’d take an egg out of the carton, look at it longingly, dream of the tray of spicy deviled eggs I’d always wanted to bring to a party, and then sigh and crack the egg into a skillet instead. Well, until this weekend when my friend MT casually mentioned the secret to easy to peel hard boiled eggs.
Do you want to know the secret? I’ll tell you.
You don’t boil the eggs. You steam them.
Yep. That’s the entire secret. Take the eggs out of the fridge about 20 minutes before you start to steam them so that they come to room temperature. Plop them in a steamer basket, make sure there’s a good amount of water in the pot (just to the bottom of the steamer basket), and steam the eggs, covered, for 25 minutes or so. Cool and then refrigerate.
So there. That’s the secret. The next party I have to go to, I’m making deviled eggs.
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