Occasionally I go through periods of time…we’ll call them phases…where I need to remember what’s truly important to me. It can be very easy for me to let things like my own expectations of myself, my contrived idea of what it is that I “should” be doing in life, my self-judgement get in the way of what’s actually real and right in front of me.
Sadly, when this stinkin’ thinkin’ starts to creep into my mind it’s often related to food and cooking. Perhaps it’s because I feel so passionate about food and feeding people. Perhaps it’s because everyone on the planet seems to be a self proclaimed “foodie,” have a food blog, a food Instagram feed, a food snap chat (whatever that means), and is clearly making more money than me, taking better photographs than me, writing better recipes than me, and in general doing it all better than me. Perhaps it’s because I have mounds of student debt that appear in my subconscious as a gaping hole in the earth into which I routinely toss bucket of money.
At the end of the day, it really doesn’t matter from where it stems. The fact is, this stinkin’ thinkin’ can cause me to shut down. I stop doing the things that really make me happy like cook for the people I love and for myself. Sometimes it takes months to get out of this funk, hence my recent hiatus from posting.
Fortunately, I’ve learned to recognize this pattern and now I know how to handle it. First of all, I have to allow myself time (without guilt) to be apart from the thing I’m wrestling with. It’s like needing to take time to be apart from a significant other. You understand yourself a bit better and you each come back and share what you’ve learned about yourself with the other.
I’ve also learned that when I’m ready to get back in the saddle, so to speak, that I have to get back to the basics and strip out the complexities that I make up in my mind. After all, it’s food, people. We eat it, it keeps us alive. I have to keep it simple so that all of the pretentious notions about food that float around in the world and in my mind don’t start to take over and run the show.
That’s why this morning I’ve decided to share with you my favorite method for cooking soft boiled eggs. If you know anything about me, you know that I believe eggs are the most amazing food ever. They are arguably one of the healthiest, most versatile, and most easily accessed food in many of our diets. In fact, we are in the process of introducing our own chicken coop to our little urban homestead in Austin!
A well done soft boiled egg is like comfort food for me. Silky soft whites encase creamy, slightly gelatinous yolk. Add a little kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper and serve atop a piece of buttered toast to soak up any of that brilliant yolk and you’ve got a breakfast that’ll make you feel like a baby tucked gently into a fresh, clean, cotton blankie. It may be simple, but right now simple is what I need.
Seven Minute Soft Boiled Egg
- 3-6 large eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
- Bring 4-6 cups of water to the boil in a large pot over high heat.
- Using a slotted spoon, slowly lower each egg into the pot of boiling water. Lower the heat to medium-high and maintain a gentle simmer. The water should be bubbling but not rolling.
Protip: When submerging the eggs do so very slowly. Introducing the eggs to boiling water too quickly can sometimes make them crack. This also gives you some time to take a few seconds to just stare into a pot of boiling water — very therapeutic, try it.
- Simmer, uncovered, for 7 minutes.
- Pour off the boiling water and fill the pot with cold water to quickly cool the eggs. Gently peel the eggs, season with salt and pepper and serve, warm, with toast, cottage cheese, or fresh fruit.