POV: Your friends are having a summer potluck and you’ve been tasked with making the egg salad. It’s all fun and games until you have to peel it all. those. eggs.
When the crew asks for this summer staple but you can’t be bothered to painstakingly peel a million of them, this awesome no-peel cooking hack will save your day…not to mention hours of cooking. your time. The secret is to use a classic French culinary technique known as a bain-marie to prepare a number of already-cracked eggs in just a few minutes. This heated “bain marie” method slowly cooks eggs in the oven without overcooking them, and it couldn’t be easier to do at home.
Ready to crack? To ensure a flawless execution of using a double boiler to cook a bunch of egg salad-ready eggs at once, we talked to a professional chef about the tips and tricks needed to get the job done. We also learned other ways to apply this technique to foods other than eggs (hello, effortless desserts).
The water bath technique
First things first: what exactly is a bain-marie? “A bain-marie is basically a hot water bath or water bath,” says King Phojanakong, the chef and founder of Kuma Inn, Small Ax Peppers and Cook Like King in New York. To make one, all you need to do is fill a container. with water, then lower another bowl, pot, or other container into the bowl of water that holds the ingredients you are going to cook or keep warm. The double boiler should only touch the outside of the container, not the food itself. bain-marie creates a Great gentle and very even heating environment, as water creates a barrier between food and direct heat from the oven, stove or heat source, preventing burns and uneven cooking,” adds Phojanakong. It’s not all that different from sous vide cooking – it’s just much easier to perform and doesn’t require any special tools or gadgets.
Phojanakong says this simple culinary technique can be applied to many delicious dishes like custards, flan, cheesecake, or even making scrambled eggs. “If you like creamy scrambled eggs, baking them in a bain-marie guarantees perfectly creamy, just-cooked scrambled eggs,” he adds. (FWIW, it’s also a brilliantly simple way to feed a big, hungry breakfast crowd.).” According to Phojanakong, using a double boiler prevents sauces from separating or evaporating, and preserves their concentration, which can occur in the face of high heat.
How to make easy hard-boiled eggs without peeling them in a bain-marie
A recent viral video on TikTok by @jamiefielding_ with over 14 million views shows her using a double boiler to bake eggs for an egg salad recipe. Yes, you heard that right: in addition to avoiding the trauma of peeling dozens of eggs, you also won’t have to wait forever for a large pot of water to boil.
To start, Fielding greases a loaf pan with about a tablespoon of avocado oil using a dry paper towel, and makes sure to have all the crevices and the bottom oiled. Next, she carefully cracks seven eggs into the pan, keeping the yolks intact to avoid mixing them with the whites.
@jamiefielding_ Responding to @christygclay so much easier than trying to peel eggs. #eggsalad#howtoboileggs#nopeeleggs#easypeelhardboiledeggs#hardboiledeggs#breakfastideas#highproteinbreakfast #eggsalad#eggsaladsandwiches#EasyWithAdobeExpress #eatmore#healthytok#cookingtok#foodtok ♬ original sound – Kitchen Hacks & Nutrition
Then comes the most important step, the bain-marie. To prepare the bath, Fielding fills a large 9 x 13 inch baking dish with room temperature water until the eggs are just submerged. She then places the loaf pan in the center of the water-filled baking dish and puts them in a 350°F oven to bake for about 30 minutes. When ready, Fielding removes the loaf pan from the baking dish and frees the eggs from the edges with a rubber spatula. Finally, she carefully flips them onto a clean cutting board and uses a large chef’s knife to roughly chop the eggs. And There you go! Easy-to-prepare “hard-boiled” eggs for the salad, without the hassle and time-consuming elbow grease.
Tips and tricks for using this cooking method *safely*
When handling hot water in the kitchen, it is always important to be careful. To safely apply the bain-marie cooking method, Phojanakong shares some simple tips to avoid any mishaps in the kitchen. “To avoid any potential burn situations, be sure to use a base container with high sides, so water doesn’t overflow when moving containers in and out of the oven or heat source.” Phojanakong also recommends keeping the oven around 325°F (or stovetop flames at low to medium heat) to prevent foods from drying out, scorching or burning.
TL; DR: If done with care, using a double boiler to cook eggs for a crowd can yield chef-quality results at home with about no effort required.
Watch the video below to find out why Tracy Lockwood Beckerman, MS, RD calls eggs “nature’s multivitamin”:
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