Monday, November 28, 2011

Scrambled Eggs by Jack Allen

What better way to start this online magazine than with a simple plate of scrambled eggs for my son before school on a Monday morning?

Normally when I make eggs for John’s breakfast he likes his eggs sunny side up.  That way he can poke the yolks with the pointy ends of the toast, and from that we get the name pokin’-yolkin’ eggs.

On another day we’ll take the opportunity to examine the local phenomenon that is pokin’-yolkin’ eggs because today we are out of bread, which makes the whole toast process a challenge.

Let’s start our culinary adventure at the start, which is near the beginning, which I have found makes most cooking tasks far easier than when I start them at the middle.  I am using a ten inch non-stick pan by Chefology, one that I chose because of the thickness of the metal.  I am presuming the thickness works to distribute heat more evenly.  Whether that’s true or I’m making it up is hard to tell, but what is easy to tell is how well this pan makes eggs.  Since I bought this pan specifically for making eggs, that’s handy.

Even though this is a non-stick pan, I like to melt a little butter to coat the surface for a little extra lubrication and a little flavor.  Who doesn’t love the taste of butter?  Ok, those of you who object, please line up to the right to fill out questionnaires.

I heat the pan just enough to melt the butter, not so hot that the butter burns.  Who likes the taste of burned butter?

When the butter is melted I shut off the heat.  Some people like to mix their eggs in a bowl.  That’s great, but I like to put them right in the pan and I don’t want the eggs to start cooking before I’m ready for them to start cooking.  I’m a little slow and when things get ahead of me I have a hard time keeping up.

I could go over the proper technique for cracking eggs, but I think that is best left to the experts.  I’m just a guy and I break my eggs over the closest suitable device, and in this case it is the edge of the grill over the burner.

With my eggs appropriately disbursed in the pan, I proceed to add a tiny bit of water, maybe a teaspoon for two eggs.  This is difficult to measure precisely because being a guy, I just hold the pan under the faucet and turn on the water for a second.  That’s accurate, right?

There is some debate about the necessity of water to make scrambled eggs, but I have found that a little bit of water makes the eggs fluffier and that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Now that I have my eggs in the pan with a bit of water, it’s time to re-engage the burners and apply heat, which tends to have a positive effect on the cooking of our breakfast.  But it doesn’t take a lot of heat.  We want the eggs fluffy and tender, not tough and burned.  How many of you have kids who are going to eat tough, burned eggs?  I’ll eat a lot of questionable things but even I don’t want my eggs tough and burned.

So we use a wooden spoon or a plastic spoon to stir the eggs over low heat because after all, this is a non-stick pan and I kind of want it to stay that way.  It takes only a few minutes for the eggs to cook, with a little help from the low-impact rotational motivator device, or wooden spoon for those of you who prefer more technical descriptions.  Then the eggs go right onto the plate, or horizontal ceramic-surface support device.

A little salt and a dash of pepper and it’s ready to go for your eight year old, or for you if you’re going to be selfish and not share with anyone.  It’s important not to use too much salt, but another thing I have learned is that a little bit of salt can really bring out the flavor in most foods.

So there you have your scrambled eggs, done the Kung Fu San Soo way.  Dinner might be kind of fun and maybe tomorrow we’ll find out what happens with that.  We’ll come back to eggs another day, maybe for those pokin’-yolkin’ eggs or a good old-fashioned omelet.  In the meantime, take a look at the Scrivens Academy of Martial Arts website.