If you are an Indian reading this article, you’d be familiar with the famous Hindi tune – “Sunday ho ya Monday, Roz khao ande”, which basically translates to – Sunday or Monday, eat eggs every day!
Here’s an interesting fact: A large egg contains only 70 calories and 5 grams of fat. Eggs are loaded with essential nutrients like proteins, vitamins, and minerals. Eggs are pretty much the gold standard against which every other protein source is compared to. Not to mention, they’re cheap! And delicious! Yet, you probably avoid eating eggs due to its high cholesterol content which can lead to cardiovascular diseases.
However, that is a complete myth! You can breathe a sigh of relief because a study conducted by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition stated that there is no link between eggs and cardiovascular diseases. You can eat eggs in their raw form. But bear in mind that cooked eggs are easier to digest and safer to eat. Studies have found that you can use 91% of the protein in cooked eggs, compared to only 51% in raw eggs.
So, now that we’ve got all the nitty-gritty out of the way, it’s time to switch-up your egg game. Don’t fall into a boring routine with your standard scramble; I have wrapped up six egg-cellent ways to cook eggs while retaining its nutritional value:
Making a soft-boiled egg takes a little more effort but it’s a lot healthier as well. This method ensures that all the nutrients in the yolk are retained. All you have to do is fill a pot with water up to 2 inches. Place your eggs in the pot, and bring the water to a boil (5-7 minutes). Now isn’t that simple? Note that making a perfectly soft-boiled egg is all about timing and an accurate temperature. Your soft-boiled eggs should have firm, custard-like whites and warm, runny yolks.
To make a classic omelet, you need to heat one tablespoon of olive oil in an iron skillet. While your pan heats up, crack two eggs into a bowl. To this, add two tablespoons of water, and a pinch of salt & pepper. Whip the eggs until you see small bubbles and pour it into the pan. Push the cooked edges into the center until it’s cooked completely. Then flip it over and let it cook for one minute. Serve hot! You can even add any vegetables of your choice. This makes it even healthier.
This requires some patience and technique. A popular dish, eggs benedict, uses this method of cooking eggs in its preparation. Heat about three inches of water in a saucepan, bring it to a boil. Pop an egg into a cup and then carefully slip it into the saucepan. Once the whites are cooked and the yolk starts becoming firm, lift the eggs gently with a slotted spoon and serve!
Sunny side up
Since direct heat is applied to only the bottom part of the egg in this method, the nutrients in the yolk stay intact. If you want to cook an egg that looks exactly like the egg emoji on social media, follow these steps: Heat your skillet on low heat for just a few seconds, and add very little butter to it. Crack an egg open onto the skillet and let it cook for about 4-5 minutes. You’ll see the egg going from clear, to cloudy, to white. Lift it up, slide it onto a plate and voila! You’re done! This is how I usually like my eggs.
Hard-boiled eggs are cooked very similarly to the soft-boiled eggs except that they are cooked for a longer time (13-15 minutes). This causes the yolks to overheat, leading to oxidization. Oxidized fats can be hard for the body to utilize and hence, it’s best if you leave the yolk uncooked. Having said that, this method is very easy and hard-boiled eggs are readily available to go at cafeterias and petrol pumps.
The process is very similar to making an omelet. Except, when you scramble the eggs, you’re basically fusing the fats and proteins, exposing them to heat and oxygenation. In case you’re using conventional eggs, it’s best to avoid this method since it’s already pro-inflammatory. You can prepare this by whisking your eggs and pouring them into a hot pan greased with two teaspoons of butter. Turn and fold the eggs gently until it’s not runny anymore. This should, however, be your last option.
The burning question is whether you should avoid eating the yolk, as mentioned in several misguided articles, and be eating egg white omelets only? The answer is a resounding NO! The yolk is by far the best part pf the egg and should not be avoided at any cost despite what several ‘studies’ tell you. Just experiment with the yolk in different ways and you should be able to incorporate it seamlessly into your existing meal.
So there are the six brilliant ways on how to cook eggs especially if you’re interested in maximizing the amazing health benefits! Remember to always cook eggs on low heat for a shorter duration. This helps in maximizing the nutrients and prevents the production of oxysterols which increases the risk of heart diseases.