We raise chickens and therefore have an abundance of fresh eggs. Anyone trying to peel a fresh egg that's been hard boiled or soft boiled will know that it is a tricky proposition. I've tried just about every method, here are just a few: using vinegar, or salt or vinegar and salt, plunging into ice cold water then dipping the cold egg into boiling water for 10 seconds and peel while hot, to baking them.
All of these methods work to create hard boiled eggs. There are differences in the end product that are noticeable, say between boiling and baking, but they are all delicious. That is not the problem. The problem is in the peeling. Fresh eggs, really fresh eggs are hard to peel. So the taste is great, but the look isn't. If you want to make deviled eggs or use egg slices as a decoration - forget about it. And the peeling process is long and frustrating.
Today, after many, many attempts I found a combination of tricks and tips that worked perfectly: Take room temperature eggs and poke a tiny hole in the fatter, rounder end of the egg. Place eggs in a medium saucepan that has a lid, filling with water, enough to cover eggs plus a 1/2 inch or so. Put the pan without the lid on the burner and set to heat to high. You want to bring the water to a boil, but not a full rolling boil. It took my water about 12 minutes to boil. All this will totally depend on the temperature in your house, the temperature of the water and how your stove heats the pan. So testing will be required. You will definitely have to figure out what works best for you. Once the water is just boiling, geez, wish I had a picture. Rolling boil juggles the eggs in the pan. What you are looking for is one or two minutes before that happens. Anyway, once the water is just boiling, turn off the heat, put a lid on it and set the timer for 12 minutes. remove the eggs from the hot water to icy water to quick cool. They will peel great and have fluffy, yellow centers.
It's the pin in the bottom I think that makes the eggs peel well. It took me 4 batches of eggs to arrive and the perfect amount of time to get the desired done-ness inside. I strongly recommend you do the same. I boiled three and four eggs at a time because we have chickens that lay dark brown, light brown and green eggs. They are all different in size, shape and peel-ability, so each batch included one of each. If there is one thing I've learned through this whole process is that whatever times I've laid out here are guidelines only. Not one, single technique prescribed by any other blogger, food site or expert worked exactly as described. I've tried over 30 different methods in the last year. There are so many variables: the chemical makeup of your water, the size and age of the eggs, the type of eggs, the size of the pan, the heating rate of your stove, etc., etc., etc. Test. Test, test, test. You'll be happy you did. I know I am!
Once again, we can have pretty egg slices! Woot!