Have I ever told you about my idea to open a breakfast place in San Francisco that serves Hard Scrambled Eggs and sells Toast for 5¢? No one would ask you what kind of toast you wanted because it would all be on white bread (ok, maybe all sourdough). We would sell Pancakes and French Toast and neither would have any sort of cheese or fruit in them.
All that aside, I do like my eggs softly scrambled, the way Jacques Pepin would make a classic french omelet as opposed to what he calls a country omelet, which is closer to the way most of us grew up with scrambled eggs. The difference is in the size of the curds. You control the size of the curds by how much you agitate it and by controlling the heat. Bigger curds happen with higher heat and less agitation.
There are lots of places to learn how to scramble eggs, from Jacques’ omelet method to Gordon Ramsay’s popular method. The things I’ve taken away from those is to:
- Decide what kind of eggs you want beforehand
- Use a heavy pan that will hold heat
- Use butter, milk, cream, or something similar to get a nice, creamy texture
- Use heat and agitation appropriate to what you want
One reason I don’t always make creamy, soft scrambled eggs is because it usually makes the pan comically difficult to clean, but I digress…
If you’re cooking with eggs and have either a baby or a camera in one hand, it’s good to know how to crack them cleanly just using the other. I finally learned this trick when I realized that it’s all about the squeeze. After you crack the shell, squeeze with your thumb and middle finger, then pry the egg apart. The third picture shows how I position my hand to make that happen.
This time, I added the eggs and butter into a mostly cold pan and started beating immediately. Notice the empty burner to the right. That’s important if you need to take the eggs off the heat for a bit.
I usually cook the eggs with a rubber spatula until I can see the pan while I’m stirring, then I move it off the heat and scramble some more until it cools down, then back on the heat
(sorry for the blurry picture, I was just moving that fast)
I usually take it off the heat just before it’s done and let the heat from the pan finish it. It takes constant attention, but is delicious, especially with a stiff piece of toast with some butter melted on top.