How to cook eggs

There's a lot you can do with the humble egg – you just need how to know how to cook it!

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Eggs are a perfect meal choice – they have a high nutritional value and they are an excellent source of protein which keeps you feeling fuller for longer. Not only do they make delicious and healthy meals on their own, but eggs are a vital ingredient to countless dishes and sauces. Plus, they are easy to prepare! Below are 'how-to' tips to help you boil, poach and stir-fry.

Tip: There's a lot of confusion about whether eggs should be stored in the pantry or in the fridge. The answer is: store them in the fridge. That said, you'll get better poached eggs if you allow the eggs to return to room temperature before cooking.

Soft-boiled eggs

Place the eggs in a saucepan of cold water. Bring the water to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer (which means a slow, gentle boil) for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the eggs from the saucepan and serve.

Hard-boiled eggs

The cooking process is the same as soft-boiled eggs; however, the eggs should be simmered for 8 minutes. When the eggs are cooked, remove them from the saucepan and cool them with cold water. This stops them overcooking and prevens blackness around the yolk.

Poaching eggs

Step 1: Pour about 5cm of water into a small saucepan, add 1 teaspoon of vinegar and bring the water to the boil. Crack an egg into a teacup or saucer. Gently slip the egg into the saucepan. Reduce the heat to medium, and gently simmer for 2 to 3 minutes or until the egg white is firm.

Step 2: Once the egg is cooked, remove it from the pan with a slotted spoon; lightly press the outside of the egg white to check that it's firm and cooked to your liking. Place the egg on paper towel to allow the water to drain. Season the egg with a pinch of sea salt, slide it onto a serving plate and serve with toast and baby spinach leaves.

Scrambled eggs

Step 1: Crack an egg into a small bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of water and lightly whisk (which means to stir quickly with a wire whisk or fork). Spray a non-stick wok or frypan with olive oil and heat over medium heat. Pour the egg mixture into the wok and swirl to cover the pan.

Step 2: When the egg is almost set, break up the mixture with a wooden spoon and stir-fry until cooked. This is a great way to cook eggs for fried rice or quick stir-fries.