Saturday, February 10, 2018

Over Easy, Please

I love me some over easy eggs. It's my go-to order when we go out for breakfast. This morning, I woke up wanting some eggs, so I got out my non-stick pan, some butter, a couple of eggs and a bamboo spatula.

Pic from Google Images

Once the butter was hot, I added the eggs, salt and pepper, and let them cook. When it was time to flip them, I slipped the spatula under the eggs and attempted a flip. Yeah, it didn't work. So I did it again, and it sort of worked. One of my eggs flipped over on top of the other and the yolk broke.

Damn it, I was going to end up with over medium eggs and those are gross.

My eggs were slipping all around the non-stick pan and the broken yolk was quickly cooking, but the whites that needed to cook were not and it was rapidly looking like I was going to have a fried egg sandwich for breakfast instead of my two over easy eggs.

Eventually, I got it sorted out - the whites cooked, while minimizing the cooking of the broken yolk - and got my very ugly eggs onto my plate.

I was grumbling to myself as I sat down to eat my ugly, not-perfectly-cooked eggs, "I wish we had one of those thin nylon spatulas! Then I could have flipped them."

At that point it dawned on me that I was blaming the tool (bamboo spatula) for my lack of skill. I had all of the tools I needed, namely a non-stick pan, but I did not have the skill. My husband is a chef, he never uses a spatula to flip eggs. Why? Because he has the skill to use the pan to flip them.

I have neither the skill, nor the courage, to attempt to just flip my eggs with a flick of my wrist.

As shooters - sometimes new shooters, sometimes old shooters - we can have a tendency to blame the tool. It sure the hell wasn't the bamboo spatula's fault I screwed up my eggs. It's an inanimate object that I put into use poorly. It was my fault. I didn't have the skill. Running out to buy a high speed, low drag thin nylon spatula isn't going to magically give me the ability to make perfect over easy eggs.

A chef, like my husband, may consider the ability to flip eggs in a pan a fundamental skill that all trained chefs should know. Lay cooks, like myself, who can cook well enough to feed themselves and occasionally impress friends tend to find work-arounds for those fundamentals. To an untrained person, my "skill" in the kitchen puts me just slightly above average. To a trained person, I cause much head-shaking, because I don't have the fundamentals down. I know just enough about a very few things in the kitchen to be dangerous - impressive to others who don't know any better, but exasperating to the trained.

Instead of going out to buy a new spatula, I'm going to buy another dozen eggs and have my husband teach me the fundamental skill I'm lacking.


Daddy Hawk said...

I prefer cast iron skillets with a stainless steel spatula myself; but, then again, we’ve established that I am an old furt with a penchant for outdated technology (that still gets the job done). Having said that, Have Jaybird post a video of his flick o’ The wrist trick so we can all benefit from the learning experience.

GunDiva said...

Cast iron? That's like using an old muzzle-loader :D