Hard-boiled eggs are eggs possessing a firm white albumen and firm yellow yolk after boiling. They are nutritious and are versatile food items. Myriads of people relish lovely hard-boiled eggs for breakfast. Hard-boiled eggs go well with tuna and taste great on a fresh bed of spinach. They even taste good simply with some sprinkling of salt and pepper. Deviled eggs make perfect picnic lunches and are a favorite food item on Easter. Pickled eggs, which are regarded as a delicacy across the globe are also prepared using hard-boiled eggs. Attaining perfectly hard-boiled eggs is something we all desire. It is very important to cook hard-boiled eggs for the right amount of time. Overcooked eggs cause the protein in the egg to toughen and become rubbery. The yolk may even develop a greenish, purplish ring around it. Moreover, overcooked eggs are difficult to peel.
How to Make Hard-Boiled Eggs
Place the eggs in a saucepan (single layer) and cover them with an inch or two of cold water. Ensure the eggs are completely submerged in water, or else only submerged parts of the egg will get cooked. You should start off with cold water and then gently bring the eggs to a boil. This will prevent the eggs from cracking. Addition of half a teaspoon of salt or a tablespoon baking soda will also prevent cracking. Make sure you add salt or baking soda before turning on the burner.
Add one tablespoon of vinegar to the water in the saucepan. This will prevent the egg whites from leaching out of the eggs, if they happen to crack while cooking. The vinegar imparts its flavor into the eggs, therefore, those who dislike the flavor of vinegar can skip this step.
Light the burner on high and allow the eggs to come to a rapid boil. As soon as the water begins to boil, remove the pan from the burner for some seconds.
Reduce the heat of the burner to low and place the pan back on the burner. Allow it to simmer for a minute.
After a minute, turn off the burner and place a lid over the saucepan. Allow the eggs to sit in the pan for the next 12 minutes. These perfect hard-boiled eggs are ready. You will not find any soft or uncooked parts in the egg.
The secret to peeling hard-boiled eggs is to attain perfectly boiled eggs. If the eggs are hard-boiled perfectly, the peeling will also be easy. Now that you have learned how to hard-boil eggs perfectly, peeling them will become easier. However, let us move ahead to some tips for peeling hard-boiled eggs that will help make the peeling process even more easier.
Peeling Hard-Boiled Eggs Easily
Step 1: Once the eggs have been boiled, gently and carefully pour out the hot water and replace it with icy cold water. Icy cold water ensures the separation of the albumen (thin-film that connects the shell to the egg) from the shell of the egg, thereby facilitating the peeling process. If icy cold water is not available, cold water will also do.
Step 2: Tap both the ends of the egg on a hard surface such as the kitchen countertop, or a vessel and break the shell on both ends. Next, lay the egg on its side and roll it quickly, firmly and gently onto the hard countertop. This rolling conduces several cracks on the surface of the shell, thereby making peeling easier. Place the egg into a bowl of warm water. The peel will readily slip away.
The trick to peeling hard-boiled eggs easily is to ensure that the eggs are several days old. Hard-boiling eggs that are farm fresh will yield to eggs which are virtually impossible to peel. Buy eggs and store them for 5-10 days before hard-boiling farm fresh eggs. This is because as the eggs age, the carbon dioxide present in the albumin seeps out, thereby reducing its acidity. Research reveals that reduced acidity assists in easier peeling.
If the eggs are cumbersome to peel, place them in the refrigerator for some days and then they become easier to peel.
Adding half teaspoon of salt into the water before boiling the eggs will facilitate easy peeling of the eggs.
Once the eggs have been hard-boiled, place them in cold water containing ice and one teaspoon of baking soda. Baking soda reduces the adherence by raising the pH level. Then crack the wide end of the egg and remove a small piece. Hold the egg and blow vigorously into the narrow portion of the egg. This will lead to the expelling of the wide end. The shell will just slip off.
To crack the shells easily, place the hard-boiled eggs in an empty saucepan and rattle them around till the eggs are cracked. However, don't do this vigorously, as you do not want to damage the albumen underneath. Rolling the egg between your palms helps get the shell cracked all over. Then remove the inner membrane along with the peel under running tap water, which helps get rid of all the small, loose shell pieces.
Peeled hard-boiled eggs can be stored in the refrigerated for a few days. Unpeeled ones can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week. The crux of peeling hard-boiled eggs is to first cool the boiled eggs immediately and then allow them to crack completely. Hope this article has provided sufficient information to those who have had trouble peeling hard-boiled eggs.