- Make sure your eggs are really fresh. Fresh eggs have a thicker white near the yolk that will better hold a round shape as it cooks. You can tell how fresh an egg is by putting it in a glass of water; if it lies horizontally at the bottom, it is very fresh; if it starts to float or stand on end it is less fresh. If your egg isn’t so fresh, crack it into a small bowl and drain off the runnier white.
- Crack your egg into a bowl or onto a saucer, this makes it easier to slide into the pan. If there is any very runny white surrounding the thicker white then tip this away.
- Bring a pan of water filled at least 3 inches deep to a simmer. Don’t add any salt as this may break up the egg white.
- Slowly tip the egg into the water. Make sure the heat is low enough not to throw the egg around – there should only be small bubbles rising. Slide the egg in as close to the water’s surface and as gently as possible.
- Cook for approximately 3 minutes or until the white is set.
- Lift the egg out with a slotted spoon and drain it on kitchen paper. Trim off any straggly bits of white. I cook 2 eggs at a time, which works well. If you need to cook more than two, keep the right temperature and make sure the water doesn’t get so hot it overcooks the egg.
adapted from BBCgoodfood.com (includes video techniques)
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