While waiting for the coddled eggs to finish in the oven, I decided to give poaching eggs another try. Thankfully, today’s came out looking much nicer. Perhaps I just needed to sleep on it, and try again with a little experience under my belt.
This is what worked for me:
Bring 4-6 cm. of water to a low simmer with bubbles fixed to the bottom, but not rising to the surface, then add a few splashes of vinegar (I used rice wine vinegar). Crack the egg into a small dish that it will be easy to slide the egg out of. Use a whisk to create a whirlpool in the saucepan, and gently drop the egg into the center of it. Let the warm water do the work of spinning the egg together. Once the water has stilled, turn down the heat and let the egg rest for a few minutes (3-5 min depending on the size of the egg, and the water’s initial temperature). If you are not sure if the egg is ready, then slide the slotted spoon under the egg and give it a little jiggle, if you notice some areas of the egg are still opaque, then let the egg slide off the spoon and continue cooking, but if it all looks white it is probably ready. Remove the egg with a slotted spoon, serve, and enjoy the satisfaction of breaking open that glorious yolk.
I was able to get a decent looking egg without stirring the water first, but the egg often settled to the bottom and had the imprint of bubbles on it. I couldn’t get the timing right for when to lift the egg from the bottom – too soon and the whites all fall away from the yolk as they are cooking. Too late and the bubbles set into the surface of the egg whites. But once I got the hang of the ‘whirlpool’ mentioned in my previous post, the eggs came out more predictably and smooth.