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Poached eggs

Poached eggs
Poached eggs are cooked, without the shell, in barely simmering (nearly boiling) water. White should be firm and yolk soft, that's the difficulty. This recipe teaches you how to succeed with three important points.
187,3293.8/5 for 13 ratings
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Last modified on: January 8th 2013

For 4 Poacheds eggs, you will need:

How long does it take?

Time required for this recipe:
PreparationRestingCookingStart to finish
37 min.2 hours3 min.2 hours 40 min.
Keeping: Several days in the fridge, in a closed jar.
At what time?
  • When will I finish if I start the recipe at a certain time?
    When should I start for the recipe to be ready at a certain time?
Work this out...

Step by step recipe

Stage 1 - 2 hours
Poached eggs : Photo of step #1
1st important point: Remove 4 eggs from the fridge at least 2 hours in advance, you should use eggs at room temperature for the cooking time indicated below to work.

Stage 2 - 10 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #2
Bring a pan of unsalted water to boil. When boiling, pour in 2 tablespoons white (spirit) vinegar, and reduce heat to a simmering water.

That is the 2nd important point: your water should not be salted (salt disturbs the cooking of egg white), and simmering, not boiling, because big bubbles boiling produce irregular and ugly poached eggs.

Prepare a bowl of cold water.

Stage 3 - 1 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #3
Break the first egg into a cup.

Stage 4 - 1 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #4
Slip egg smartly into simmering water...

Stage 5 - 1 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #5
...and immediately gather the white around egg yolk to prevent egg spreading out too much.

If you have difficulty doing that, try this tip: with a tablespoon give one or two turn to the pan to make a small vortex in the water, then add egg and the vortex will do the gathering job for you.

Stage 6 - 3 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #6
Leave cook for 2 minutes and 30 seconds (3 minutes maximum). This cooking time is the 3rd important point for a perfect result.

Stage 7 - 1 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #7
After this time, remove egg from hot water and put it immediately into the bowl of cold water to stop the cooking.

Leave it in, and continue with all eggs.

Stage 8 - 2 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #8
With scissors, trim off any irregular lumps and trails of egg white to get as round and even an egg as possible.

Stage 9 - 1 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #9
Then put on a cloth to dry.

Stage 10 - 20 min.
Poached eggs : Photo of step #10
Do this with all eggs, your soft-boiled eggs are ready.


Poached eggs are use in many recipes, cold or hot, but are always delicious.

If you want to reheat them, put in the microwave for 15 seconds, or leave 3 minutes in a bowl of hot tap water (not boiling).

If you make poached eggs in advance, the day before for example, leave to stand in a bowl of salted cold water in the fridge.

White vinegar is used because wine vinegar would stain the egg red.

Nutritional information

% are calculated relative to a Recommended Dietary Intake or RDI of 2000 k-calories or 8400 k-joules by day for a woman (change to a man).

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Recipes that use this recipe: 5

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Home made.

More recipes?

This recipe uses (among others)
EggEgg: You can get more informations, or check-out other recipes which use it, for example: New tiramisu, Quiche Bretonne, Scrambled eggs with langoustines and asparagus tips., Pistachio cream, Spinach Omelette, ... All
White (spirit) vinegarWhite (spirit) vinegar: You can check-out other recipes which use it, like for example: How to prepare sorrel, Fish petals, vegetables julienne, and beurre blanc, Beurre blanc sauce, How to prepare cabbage, Caesar salad, ... All

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