Not that long ago at a recent get together, Jman presented a jar of pickled eggs he had made. Happily they were consumed along side some homebrew ( the origin of which I can’t remember). The eggs floating in the spiced brine looked a little odd. Like preserved specimens of some alien creature. But they looked a lot better than those jars of eggs you might see at random pubs, which have probably been sitting on the shelf at room temp for years. Why vinegary eggs go along with beer seems a mystery to me. But nonetheless they pair well. We then sampled a special version he had made, using smoked eggs. Smoked eggs! Yep pretty tasty!
We discussed the merits of the hard-boiled egg, and the nightmare that can be peeling the shelled bastards. I ranted for a while about how I had been searching for over a year for a method to perfectly peeled hard boiled eggs and that I had basically given up on them as an edible food item. You may even remember my attempts at a shell-less hard boiled egg with disastrous results. Myths about how to prepare hard boiled eggs abound. After searching the interwebz, I think I tried at least 6 different types of water chemistry in which to boil the eggs. Some add vinegar or add baking soda to the boiling water. I even used distilled water, hard water, and soft water. Many sources say that you should use old eggs, or poke a small hole in the end of the egg. I tried organic eggs, free range eggs, fresh eggs, and eggs from a big box store that were probably weeks old. I even kept some eggs in my fridge from a lengthy period of time at which point they were probably unsafe to eat. None of these worked for me. My eggs always ended up looking like they were peeled by a lobster. I tried peeling them hot, cold, running water… I even tried the technique of blowing the eggs out of the shell with air. I had emotionally given up on my relationship with these damn eggs. I just started poaching them. But much like a dysfunctional relationship, I felt I could somehow change these eggs to my will, and never really gave up. I just walked away for a while. I waited for the perfect moment to sweep in and make these frickin eggs mine.
Reinvigorated buy the flavor of Jman’s pickled eggs, and the desire to create a jar of my own, I once again set about my search for the best method. It had to be out there. After all, they sell already peeled eggs at the grocery store. This has to have been figured out by someone! And there it was. A random choice of words typed into the search bar resulted in the answer. Eggs cooked under pressure. Very brutal. Really? A pressure cooker to cook hard boiled eggs. Is this real? I quickly bought 3 dozen eggs and set out to test it. I loaded the eggs into my pressure cooker and hoped for the best. With the pressure set to 5 psi, I steamed the eggs for 10 minutes and then quickly cooled them in cold running water. Then the moment of truth came. I was fearful of cracking the shell. Would I be let down again?… Its real! It works! In quick succession we peeled eggs with no issues. Out of my test pot I grabbed an egg cooked the normal fashion ( did you really think I would not be scientific about this test?) Bam, lobster clawed egg. There you have it gang. This is the real deal. Fear not the hard boiled egg.
DILLED EGGS – via pickyourown.org
12 peeled, hard-cooked eggs
1½ cups white vinegar
1 cup water
¾ teaspoon dill weed
¼ teaspoon white pepper
3 teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon mustard seed
½ teaspoon onion juice or minced onion
½ teaspoon minced garlic or 1 peeled garlic clove
- Bring all the ingredients, except the eggs, to a boil,
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Pack no more than one dozen peeled, hard-cooked eggs loosely into a warm, pre-sanitized quart jar (or other similar size container which can be closed tightly).
- There needs to be plenty of pickling solution, and enough to completely cover the eggs. Pour the hot pickling solution over the eggs in the jar, cover, and refrigerate immediately.
- I found 1 week in the fridge got the eggs sour to the core. Eggcellent. Oh that was bad.