Back to basics: Poached eggs

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Back to basics: Poached eggs

A perfect poached egg makes for better brunches. We take the humble egg from basic to brilliant.

For the perfect poached egg – always use the freshest eggs as possible.


  • Bring a medium saucepan of water and 2–3 T white vinegar to the boil. Reduce the heat until the water is barely bubbling, then stir using a slotted spoon to create a whirlpool.
  • Break an egg into a tea cup, then carefully tip it into the swirling centre and simmer for 2–3 minutes for a soft egg. Cook a minute or two longer for a harder egg.
  • Remove using a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Serve immediately.


  • Line the holes of a muffin pan with clingwrap. Break an egg into each hole, gather the sides of the clingwrap together, twist tightly to remove any air and tie a knot as close as possible to the egg.
  • Carefully drop the egg into a saucepan of simmering water and cook for 1 minute. Remove and set aside. Repeat with the remaining eggs.
  • When ready to serve, return the eggs to the simmering water for another minute to complete cooking. Snip away the clingwrap to reveal a perfectly round poached egg.

Serve with: Microgreens, bacon and polenta toast.
For the polenta toast: Bring 160 g polenta and 4 cups water to a simmer in a saucepan. Whisk for 10 minutes until cooked. Season and add 1 T grated Parmesan. Grease a rectangular dish and pour in the polenta until about 1 cm thick. Set in fridge for 10 minutes, unmould and cut into desired shapes. Fry in butter over a low heat until crispy.

How to keep eggs fresh:

Store eggs outside the fridge in a cool place such as a grocery cupboard where there are no fluctuations in temperature. If you prefer to store them in the fridge, keep them in the middle where the temperature is constant, rather than in the door.

Also store eggs in the carton you purchased them in so that they don’t absorb food odours.

How do you tell a fresh egg from a stale one? A fresh egg will sink when placed in a bowl of water, an older egg will float.

Discover how to make hollandaise sauce here.

Discover more recipes featuring eggs here.

TASTE Article by: TASTE

The TASTE team is a happy bunch of keen cooks and writers, always on the look out for the next food trend or the next piece of cake.

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