. . . EGGS IN ENGLISH
& COOKING ARTICLE
eggs in English,
are ubiquitous in French cooking. Not only as a supporting
player, but also as the star performer. In a country
that has traditionally eaten a light breakfast, eggs
make their appearance during lunch and dinner. Where
Americans think of eggs mostly as a breakfast item,
the French welcome them in a multitude of forms as part
of l’entrée, the starter, or le plat,
the main course.
his 1914 classic, Le Répertoire de la Cuisine,
Louis Saulnier lists 422 different egg dishes. But those
are only the recipes where eggs star. There are many
more recipes where eggs are a significant ingredient,
such as soufflés and custards. Many of Saulnier’s recipes
are exact duplicates of those detailed by Escoffier
in Le Guide Culinaire, originally published in
1902. (Saulnier’s goal was to create a compendium, “a
brief and handy form, [of] as many recipes as possible,
both old and new, with which every skilled cook should
be familiar.”) Escoffier also lists a very large number
of egg recipes in his book.
Saulnier and Escoffier list ten basic ways of cooking
eggs, some of which are familiar to the American diner.
The descriptions below are quoted from Saulnier.
the] eggs in a pan with salt, pepper; whisk
and cook them in bain-marie. Finish with
cream and butter.
the cocotte and break the eggs in, season
and place them in a pan or tin with water, steam
under cover, or bake in oven.
the eggs in boiling water and cook 8 minutes,
plunge in cold water.
the egg on a plate, season with salt and pepper,
heat some oil in an omelet pan, let the egg
slide into the oil and with a wooden spoon cover
up the yolk with the solidified portions of
the white, one egg at a time.
(à la) [soft-boiled]
the egg in boiling water and cook two or three
five and half minutes, cool and shell.
the eggs in butter moulds, cook five and half
minutes, let stand a while and unmold.
the eggs in boiling water and poach two minutes
and a half, when done dip them in cold water.
making is at once very simple and very difficult,
for tastes differ regarding their preparation.
Some like them well done, some just done, and
other almost liquid. The eggs are beaten, seasoned
and poured in an omelet-pan containing very
hot butter, stir briskly with a fork in order
to heat the whole evenly, and if the omelet
is to be garnished it should be done before
rolling up. The whole process should be done
speedily, and requires long practice to attain
sur le plat [baked]
the egg dish, season the bottom and break the
egg in, start cooking on the stove and finish
in the oven, in a tin containing water.
times are a bit shorter than commonly used for modern
preparation. Escoffier’s timings are closer to those
used today. Probably, eggs in their time were a bit
different from the factory eggs available to today’s
eggs are also sized differently from those in the U.S.
In both countries, the standard size used in recipes
is a “large” egg. The average net weight of an American
large egg is 50 grams (30 grams of white and 20 grams
of yolk), whereas in the EU, a large egg is closer to
58 grams. My experience with French eggs is that they
tend to have a slightly thicker and tougher shell than
American eggs. This makes them stronger as a “serving
the recipe selection presented below, I’ve chosen both
traditional and modern egg recipes. I’ve also tried
to present a cross-section of preparation styles and
courses. Click on a recipe title to open the recipe.
other egg recipes follow the link below to Peter Hertzmann's
article comes from the web site of Peter Hertzmann,
la carte. This is one of the finest web sites I have
most of us are keen amateurs who love to dabble, Peter
is truly dedicated to the pursuit of his interest in
and love of cooking. If his web site was to be published
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is à la carte about? This is best described in
Peter's own words:
obsessive. All my life, when something interested me,
I became obsessed with it. I learned all I could about
it. I lived it! .
. . Ive been obsessive about food as long as I
can remember. I am now obsessive with French cookery
- its preparation, materials, history, politics, and
learn more why not visit the à la carte web site
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