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Oeufs au miroir - everything old is new again

jerry i h | Apr 17, 2008 09:06 PM

I had a young guest in my kitchen who loves sunny-side up eggs, but hated egg yolk all gooped up all over her plate. I then remembered oeufs au miroir: you put an egg on a plate and stick in the broiler for a minute, so the yolk gets a white film on top. I also remembered something similar being done on one of Jacques Pepin's TV shows.
I melted butter in a skillet, added the eggs. As soon as the whites were set, I spooned up butter on top of the yolks, and put a lid on the pan on low heat. I poked the yolks to test; as soon as they were firm, I slid them onto her plate. Not only did it meet with approval, but I noticed something extraordinary. Even the yolk was almost entirely coagulated - firm, but still moist - the whites were still soft and pliable. Normally, to get the yolks this firm, you would have to really cook that sucker; by then, the whites are browned and crispy on the edges and really rubbery to boot.
Cooking sunnyside up eggs with a lid on the pan to firm the yolks is an old trick. I guess I could have done eggs easyover, but even then the yolks remain partially liquid. It sure seemed like a modern technique invented by some celebrity TV super chef, but it is just an old recipe in Escoffier that has new life in my kitchen.

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