If you’ve never had one before, slow cooking an egg creates something magical from a mundane egg. It’s cooked in its shell, much like a boiled egg but that’s about where the similarities end. When you crack it open, it slips out with a white that has the texture of a thin custard and a yolk that is thick, rich, and satiny smooth. Unlike a boiled egg that’s cooked at 100 degrees C, a slow cooked egg is cooked at a steady 63.5 degrees Celsius. A couple degrees hotter and you’ll end up with a soft boiled egg, a couple degrees cooler and you’ll have a runny mess.
The concept of slow cooking an egg is nothing new. The Japanese have been using hot springs to slow cook eggs for centuries. What’s new is that you can now make them easily at home, which puts it in the reach of everyone, not just the travelers and geeks who can either fly to Japan, or rig up their own “hot spring”.
Up until now, I’ve been using a heavy pot, my oven, and an instant read thermometer to make slow cooked eggs. It was a finicky setup, which I only got to work after a lot of trial and error. The problem is that every oven is different and so someone trying to reproduce what I did would have to go through their own process of trial and error before coming up with the right combination of oven temperature and time.
When Sous Vide Supreme sent me one of their units to try out, the first thing I did was plug it in and set it to 63.5 degrees C before dropping some eggs in. Forty five minutes later, I had a batch of perfect slow cooked eggs. I’ve since made several more batches and it hasn’t failed me once.
The eggs are wonderful with some dashi and soy sauce, on a salad, in a bowl of soup, or on top of pasta. Best of all, since they’re still in their shell, they’ll keep for at least a week in the fridge, so I usually do a half dozen at a time. That way I have the eggs on hand whenever the urge arises.