Help me solve my egg problem!
October 20, 2007 12:21 PM   Subscribe

Is there a way to cook liquid eggwhite so it's the same consistency as eggwhite cooked inside a hardboiled egg? Also, recipes for eggwhites?

I really like hardboiled eggs, including the whites. I have high cholesterol, so eating the liquid eggwhite you get in a carton is much better for me (I usually mix in a single yolk for flavour). But, I can only figure out two easy ways to cook it: in the microwave (where it gets really airy and a bit rubbery), or in a frying pan with butter or oil (which defeats the whole purpose of eating it in the first place). Neither of these gives me the concentrated eggwhite texture of the white in a boiled egg. My experiments with baking it in a casserole dish have been unsatisfying - the texture's okay, but there's so little flavour.

Is there a technique I am missing, or does anybody have good recipes for eggwhite casserole type things?
posted by joannemerriam to Food & Drink (13 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
poached eggs are cooked in boiling water, like boiled eggs. Have you tried cooking your egg whites like poached eggs?

You could also start with whole eggs, hard boil, and discard the yolk.
posted by jepler at 12:31 PM on October 20, 2007

Best answer: An egg poacher, with little cups placed in a tray over boiling water, steamed with the lid on.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 12:44 PM on October 20, 2007

I have two suggestions: "In a frying pan with butter or oil", except make sure you have a modern non-stick pan, and just use a spritz of olive oil from one of those refillable spritzers. The vegetable oil won't add any cholesterol, and will add very few calories, too.

(I recommend against the use of PAM on a nonstick pan, I find over time it makes the pan non-nonstick)

The other suggestion: just hard boil eggs and throw out the yolks. I suspect this won't be that much more than the liquid eggwhites in a carton, because I remember thinking that was an overpriced product. (Although maybe that's changed, or I'm misremembering.)
posted by IvyMike at 1:03 PM on October 20, 2007

Best answer: I dare say a properly poached egg—that is, one poached directly in boiling water, per jepler's link—isn't what you're after. They're delicious, and I love them, but if it's the firmer texture of hard-boiled albumin you crave, then it's weapons-grade pandemonium's steam poacher you'll be wanting. They produce the dense, hockey-puck like eggs that are central to the Egg McMuffin and its ilk.

A technique you may be missing (depending on the nature of these casseroles you mention) is baking/broiling, in the form of shirred eggs. Many recipes for shirred eggs are blandish -- just salt, pepper, butter and cream -- but some involve breadcrumbs and sauteed peppers and crayfish and cheese and whatnot.
posted by mumkin at 1:07 PM on October 20, 2007

Pour the egg white into a plastic bag or piece of cling film, tie the top tightly and drop it in a pan of boiling water. Voila, large (as you want it) boiled egg without yolk.
posted by fire&wings at 1:10 PM on October 20, 2007 [1 favorite]

Seconding baking the eggs.
posted by Riverine at 1:11 PM on October 20, 2007

Response by poster: I had forgotten about poached eggs. We used to have a steam poacher that was made to be used on top of a bunsen burner, camping, and I never had poached eggs at any other time. That sounds perfect! Thanks.
posted by joannemerriam at 1:16 PM on October 20, 2007

I have poached, shirred, hard-boiled, fried, steamed, souffled, deviled, and otherwise transformed many an egg, and I believe my micro method gets the white as close to hard-boiled consistency as any of the above. It's fast and requires no utensils or dishes aside from the one you eat out of.

Just crack an egg into a ramekin (after separating out the yolk, for your purposes), set a saucer on top, and microwave it for 30 seconds. If it's not done to your liking, it will usually just finish itself off if you let it sit there for a minute. You could also further microwave it in 10 or 20 seconds, but be careful or you'll get the airy, rubbery problem you mention. I eat the egg right out of the ramekin or slide the perfect little disk onto my bagel or English muffin, which is easiest if I've buttered the ramekin.
posted by Cara at 1:22 PM on October 20, 2007 [2 favorites]

Egg-white omelet?
posted by londongeezer at 3:57 PM on October 20, 2007

I have never tried the steamed fake-poached egg method mentioned above (real poached eggs are cooked in - not above - the water), however fire&wings plastic baggy method definitely works, as does Cara's microwave method. The microwave is really quick, easy and effective.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 4:22 PM on October 20, 2007 [1 favorite]

Best answer: For maximum aesthetic I would go with the Egg Cuber. You'll have to experiment with timings.
posted by alms at 7:28 PM on October 20, 2007

Sorry to derail slightly, but frankly I thought the whole egg V's cholesterol thing had been seriously revised a while back (in favour of the egg)?
posted by ninazer0 at 2:10 AM on October 21, 2007

Is there something I'm missing? Why not boil real eggs as per usual and neglect to eat the yolk?
posted by cior at 7:01 PM on October 21, 2007

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