Many of us are thinking eggs around Easter.
Inspired by the Breakaway Café’s rare ability to properly cook “eggs over medium,” I decided to try it again myself at home.
What does “properly” in this case mean? To us it means eggs with partially cooked (and slightly runny) yolks, and egg whites cooked through, meaning no runny white stuff.
We had received lovely bacon and fresh eggs from friends, the perfect materials for cooking a perfect breakfast, by some standards.
As the bacon cooked slowly on medium with the fan whirring to take the bacon smell outdoors (since I love to smell other people’s cooking as I walk by), I took a little break to open and gaze out the front door at the rain falling. Oops! A little too long, I guess.
When I got back to the kitchen there was a bit of smoke rising from the pan and some very dark bacon, black in some places. Immediately I removed the bacon from the pan and placed it on paper towels on the stove to drain off the grease. And, of course, the charred bacon crumbled to smithereens.
My mother never cooked eggs over medium or over anything. She basted them.
Wondering what that means? So do many restaurant servers and breakfast cooks. It’s old fashioned, and it requires grease of some kind, ranging from bacon to butter.
According to The New Food Lover’s Companion by Sharon Tyler, baste means “to spoon or brush food as it cooks with melted butter or other fat, meat drippings, or liquid such as stock. A bulb baster can also be used to drizzle the liquid over the food.”
In this case, basting means spooning the hot grease over the top of the eggs. As you baste the eggs, you can watch the top of the yolks slowly change color from rich orange to an almost white. A soft touch, even with your finger, can tell you how fluid or solid the yoke is and when it is to your liking.
Remove the eggs one at a time and set carefully on paper towel and pat gently to remove the grease. No salt or pepper necessary because of salt in bacon grease, if that’s what you used.
This is not a recipe for diet breakfast, but it is very tasty, even without toast or potatoes.