It’s hard to think of a dish as elemental as scrambled eggs.
The only requirements for the original two-ingredient recipe (if you don’t count seasoning) are fat for cooking and eggs. Though plenty of ways exist to make them more ambitious, with fancy ingredients and elegant presentations, it seems impossible to think of a way to change them beyond the three-step process of cracking, whisking, and pouring into a hot pan.
But Daniel Patterson has figured it out.
Scrambled eggs are a beautiful thing. Quick, simple. Healthy with vegetables or gluttonous when smothered in butter, sausage and cheese. They can be recovery fuel from a late night out or a fast, hot meal before work or school. Just as important: anyone can make them.
Just whisk eggs and pour them onto a skillet.
Michelin-starred Patterson says there’s a better way, using boiling water, similar to a poached egg. Patterson, who founded Coi in San Francisco, says his method makes for an easier cleanup while avoiding any health risks associated with using Teflon-coated nonstick pans. He said he perfected his technique through trial and error.
An earlier article about the method by Bloomberg’s Kate Krader was met with some skepticism. She tested the recipe prior to publication, and we decided to document a follow-up effort on the video above.
Our verdict: They’re light and fluffy. But they were also quite watery and still left a mess in the kitchen. The pot wasn’t too egg-coated, but the strainer was annoying to clean.
Our pro tips:
Don’t salt the eggs until after you cook them. We added salt while whisking, which Patterson says would have made the eggs less cohesive and stable.
Ensure the water has a good, strong whirlpool before adding eggs. That keeps the eggs concentrated in the centre, prevents little strands from sinking.
Use a slotted spoon to skim them from the water bath.
Don’t be afraid to allow extra boiling time.