Everyday Meals

How to make poached eggs – the simple vinegar trick to stop your eggs from going wispy

Frankie Bridge shares her hack for ‘perfect poached eggs’

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Poached eggs are an integral part of many breakfast favourites, including Eggs Benedict and Eggs Florentine. But despite their popularity, many struggle to cook a poached egg themselves at home. Data from Semrush shows the number of people searching “how to make poached eggs” increased by 123.65 percent from December 2020 to January 2021.

What do you need to make poached eggs?

It goes without saying that to make poached eggs, you will need some eggs.

Make sure you have enough for the amount of poached eggs you intend to cook and that your eggs are lovely and fresh.

You can check whether your eggs are fresh with this simple water trick.

You will also need a bowl or saucer to crack your egg into initially and a saucepan to cook it in.

You will need to have some vinegar to hand, and some salt and pepper if you choose to season your poached eggs when they’re ready.

Kitchen towel and a slotted spoon are needed for when the egg is poached and ready to be lifted out.

One top tip is to get other breakfast items prepped and ready to go so you can focus on poaching the eggs.

How do you make poached eggs?

BBC Good Food has a cracking recipe for poached eggs on their website.

First, start by cracking an egg into the bowl or saucer, tipping away any “very runny white surrounding the thicker white”.

You can add a drop of vinegar into the egg bowl or saucer at this point, or you can add it to the pan of water.

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Bring a pan of water “at least 5cm deep” to a simmer, but don’t be tempted to add any salt at this point, as it will break apart the egg white.

Create a gentle whirlpool in the pan, as this helps to prevent wispiness by letting the egg white coat the yolk.

Ensuring the pan is over a low enough heat that only small bubbles are rising, slowly tip the egg into the centre of the whirlpool.

BBC Good Food recommends cooking the egg for three to four minutes, or until the white is set.

Then all that’s left to do is lift the egg out of the pan with a slotted spoon, before placing it on kitchen paper and trimming off any wispy bits that may remain.

What can you use poached eggs in?

If you fancy making your own hollandaise sauce, add a poached egg on top of ham and a toasted English muffin for a delicious Eggs Benedict.

Poached eggs can also be added to toast with avocado or spinach for a healthy breakfast or lunch.

Poached eggs are very versatile, so you could follow Prince Charles supposed approach to boiled eggs, and add a poached egg to anything you fancy.

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