Good Egg's Bad Egg's

For breakfast this morning I devoured 6 locally produced free range soft-boiled egg's, lightly gathered with the exposed ends all dispatched with a cunning zeal using my hosts favourite butter knife. It is often asked as to whether the correct etiquette dictates the 'end caps' containing the first sliver of milky white goodness should be left untouched whilst eating in public. I will admit to a slight reticence when in company, however within the constraints of my own breakfast room I am inclined to slurp at will.
Soft-boiled egg's are always to be served in an eggcup made with a wide rim and a bowl that is narrow at the bottom. Place the egg's most pointed end in the cup, never, for the love of all things holy, should the pointy end be placed uppermost as this will surely evoke the divil and his winged hordes of demons condemning you to an eternal life in purgatory. Crack the shell with a knife in a horizontal movement, all the way around the egg. The tip of the knife is used to lift the shell from the egg and place it on the side of the plate. May Jaysus himself take your eyes should you even consider smashing its heid with the spoon. That method is strictly reserved for people who wear odd socks and follow fitba teams in the Scottish third division.

Never underestimate the pure pleasure of dipping warm, toasted, golden yeasty soldiers into the richness of a well-timed soft-boiled egg. One must always start with a porcelain eggcup. Plastic, silver or various composites of tin will not suffice and in certain unsophisticated western countries usage of banned breakfast alloys can be punishable by a cereal substitute known as 'Cheerios'.
Avoid these at all costs, people who buy these usually practise satanic rituals involving roosters.

My sisters and I once went a full 3 days without acknowledgement after I discovered them using a wooden cradle to holster a 'supermarket egg'. Needless to say the faither soon married two of them off to Englishmen to spare the family from further shame. The third is firmly ensconced within the New South Wales/Victoria areas of southern Australia where ex Irish conscripts prepare egg's cooked on builders shovels or across the swage lines upon the bonnets of rough terrain vehicles in the small rural townships of both Albury and Wodonga.

Because the exposed part of the egg is relatively flat, if a dab of Scottish butter is placed on it, the butter melts and flows over the egg. If the butter slides off then you have failed and will surely end up in a fiery hell of liquid fire.
A mound of salt and pepper is best made on the side of the plate supporting the eggcup. With a small metallic spoon, such as an after-dinner coffee spoon, a soup son of egg is scooped from the shell and dipped into the seasonings. Alternatively, a pinch of salt and white pepper may be sprinkled over each bite by hand. On this occasion cracked black pepper may be used.

The height of the egg's used in the production of perfection is as crucial to the meal as the timing of the wee fellas themselves. When I want a soft boiled egg I want the yolk soft and the white firm. The boiling time has a lot to do with your elevation. 3 minutes is perfect for an elevation of 1100 ft (330 metres) if you are nearer sea level decrease the boiling time, if at a higher elevation increase the time. So simple as it may be I am sure there are many French chefs that struggle for the perfect soft-boiled egg. Invest in an egg pricker, a wee tool that will prick a small hole in the bottom of the egg allowing the air to escape, preventing the egg from cracking as it boils. Adding sea salt to combat cracking is an auld wives tale and should not be trusted. If it was true it would be in the bible, correct?

Please note, air escaping can continue to manifest itself from small holes after the consumption of the egg has taken place. Avoid theatres, long train journeys or libraries where possible.

Of course, if you are unsure of your height and elevation level and you still insist on the perfect soft boiled egg, ask a man to do it. Ladies have warmer hands and may effect the temperature of the egg's prior to boiling as they stand gossipping for long periods in the garden with their mothers about the fertilisation of their own egg's. These are deemed inedible and are not advisable for consumption.

Moving swiftly on...

After our first soiree into the seemingly innocent restaurant business we engaged the services of a tall Glaswegian gentleman who was famed for seeking out those charmless characters blighted with clumsiness when it came to dinner plates, dining chairs and a rather large ornate glass tank displaying the catch of the day. It was irony at its best considering his prey were masters at seemingly dropping everything they were paid to touch. Every debt has a life of its own. At every twist and turn in the debtors journey, people change sides and squirm, manipulate and wriggle their way deeper into the collectors pockets.

Clarity eventually prevailed, the clumsy were punished, payments realigned themselves with the original terms and the Glaswegian gentleman perfected his tastes for fine cuisine as he dined out frequently on braised lamb, vine leaves and haloumi salads without so much as ever having to raise another fork in anger. Everyone has a dark side. His was just darker than most.

Disagreements were often settled between other restaurateurs in the area with a discreet change of  Glaswegian pleasantries, while a swift stroke of a cleaver signalled the perfect out for those who wished to explore pastures new. It was never personal he once explained, purely business of course.
Other lessons he learnt was 'to make hay while the sun shines'. Eating out in swish restaurants in Glasgow back in the early eighties was still in its infancy and ripe for exploitation. A well known Scottish bank in the west end of Glasgow, of which shall remain nameless, was stunned to find that its staff eating area had been plundered of its 20 or so intricately carved ornate table and chair sets whilst undergoing an overnight cosmetic change.

Not a single note of money was stolen during the clandestine refurbishment, however takings elsewhere rose dramatically and were very kindly deposited back in the bank vaults by way of a paying in slip. I'm sure the bank that likes to say yes would vehemently nod its wealthy head in agreement at the poetry and symmetry of the unofficial loan. These avant-garde table sets are still in residence and are still classed as extremely bohemian, if not slightly "Rive Gauche" by the many rich bankers that gather to sit around them for their business lunches. Although, I am not sure whether the Marcel Duchamp's or Peggy Guggenheim's of the eighties would have been as comfortable if they knew the origin of such finery.

Och.. c'est la vie, eh?


  1. Is Scottish butter better than regular butter? Sorry, that's probably a rhetorical question.

  2. Never be sorry Mr Earl, blood is always thicker than butter. Unless it is Scottish of course.

  3. Yes, one can't beat a boiled egg.
    Must be the thick skin.

  4. There's so much science involved! So many opportunities to go wrong! I don't want to swim in the fiery lochs of hell! It's rather late in life to start tip-toing around an egg, but I don't want my soul to be damned, either.

  5. Ahhh for the love of your own God Mr Map, tis a sad day when the only person to get the entire point of the post was none other than Mr Christ himself. And I won't publish his comment.

    Perhaps I should stick with fluffy bunny posts for the Xtians and those who have a short attention span?

    Tis back to the relaxing I go.

  6. Mr UB, science is fact, unlike the fiery lochs and winged demons that visit me in the darkof a night. Tis cheerios for you my lad, and don't spare the full fat milk!

  7. Aye, as sure as egg's are egg's.

    While you're on, three of my young fellas are in Limerick the moro night, make sure they behave themselves as they are over for Paddy Kelly's stag weekend. I wouldn't want them misbehaving and bringing shame to their uncle Màrtainn and Faither Gerry of the Holy Cross in Bunratty. They have that parcel for you, the wan that we cannae speak about.

  8. You made me so hungry, I forgot to leave words behind, much less intelligent thoughts. :)

  9. I'll keep the good eye out for the lads.

    Oh yeah, that parcel....

  10. I have to be honest and admit the pointy end has always been uppermost with me but now I'm wavering. I do so enjoy - we both do - a softly boiled egg, with soldiers for me - muffins or crumpets for him. And we differ in the colour of our pepper also.
    A pleasure to read and anticipate.

  11. Dearest Hope, it is I that salivates at the hint of your company within my wee realm of midnight whisky madness. However, next time do please leave a tip before you are reaching for your hat and coat. My staff need to bolster their miserly wage in order to put shoes upon their many childers feet.

  12. Mr Map, much appreciated, they can be a handful with the drink inside of them, tis in the genes. I blame their mammy, those Norn Irns and their lack of control is simply shocking.

    The wee parcel thing, the password will be... Captain Moonlight. Be under the bridge when the cockrel crows thrice before the dawn. Bring matches and string... just in case eh?

  13. My dear lady Pat, would you mix silk and tweed upon the same hanger? Would you dare mix white pumps with the blackest of blacks? Of course, the answer on your delicate lips is no. Toying with me, you surely are. Surely, during your time spent at the College Alpin Beau Soleil, Villars-sur-Ollon, Switzerland, they taught far better manners than to feast from an upside down egg?

    M'lady, I am seriously considering moving your usual table closer to the kitchens where I may be so bold as to keep an instructive eye upon you. You have never mentioned before, but I am beginning to suspect that your man may have not have originated from Bearsden.

    I suggest you broach this subject with him by speaking directly in his own dialect. May I suggest you ask him; "See you doll, where'd you use to stay in Glesga?"

    Of course... if he is an 'east coast man' he will pretend to not understand the question and continue with his brass rubbings of the castle as he snorts in derision.

  14. Mr Christ, although your comment was riddled with many religious moot points alluding to my good self being the reincarnation of Mephistopheles, (please note the correct spelling). You did however grasp the irony between the two segments. Well done indeed.

    Returning briefly to your rather slumgullion assumption of me. According to the speculation of eminent Göthe scholar K.J. Schröer, not to mention my own knowledge on medieval demonology, Mephistopheles, one of the seven chief divils and the tempter of Faust, is rumoured to have been female. Tell me, do you see breasts anywhere within my style of communication thus far to conclude that I am female?

    As ever, because of your zeal for using religous lollapalooza (look it up) you shall remain muted and as invisible as your God.

  15. this is a lovely recipe, sugar:

    2 cups all-purpose flour, stirred before measuring
    2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/4 cup lard or vegetable shortening, chilled
    2 tablespoons butter, chilled
    3/4 cup buttermilk

    Heat oven to 450°. Adjust oven rack to center position.

    In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, soda, and salt. Cut in chilled shortening and butter until you have pieces the size of small peas. Make a well in center of dry ingredients; pour in buttermilk. With a wooden spoon, gently blend dry ingredients into the buttermilk, just until mixture is clumping together. If necessary, add a few more teaspoons of buttermilk.

    Transfer dough to a lightly floured board. Pat out in a circle about 8 inches in diameter and 1/2-inch thick. Using a 2 1/2 to 3-inch biscuit cutter, cut out and place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake on center oven rack for about 10 to 12 minutes, until tops are browned.
    Makes 10 to 12 biscuits, depending on size of cutter.

    please feel free to delete this, sweetpea, from the comment section since it has absolutely nothing to do with the post. (i really should have looked for your email address, right?) oxoxoxo

  16. Savvy, many thanks, this is a great recipe, just what I have been looking for. If I can get all the ingredients at my current location I shall be preparing the bicuits today.

    I wouldn't dream of deleting the recipe, it is far too good to do that. Instead I shall let others sample a wee taste of southern heaven. Share the love hen, eh?

  17. First thing I learned to bake "from scratch" was biscuits. However my southern Mama came from the school of non-measurement when it came to biscuits. I'd ask how much flour and she'd reply, "Until it feels right." Sigh. Granted there was a special for biscuits only bowl and I learned how but I thought I'd go nuts first!

    To this day my brother and I are the only ones who can still make Mama's biscuits, thanks to that lack of recipe.

    Sorry Chef, didn't mean to intrude in your kitchen. As I am employed in local government, which is akin to the dirt which holds up the totem pole of all mighty Federal government, I have left a couple of peanuts as a tip for your wait staff. I'll do better next time.

  18. Hope, the "until it feels right" method is what makes a great chef, great. My own mammy, Mrs Chef, never measured out a single thing in her life. It was a pleasure watching her taking a wee swally fae the bottle on occasion to "balance the mixture" of every cake she made. I was 23 before I realised that Vodka wasn't a fruit.

    Her cooking was terrible, god love her, but the memories fae her 'moments' are forever priceless.

  19. 450F = 232.22C i love conversion charts! xoxo

  20. Savvy, it's something that I never gave a second thought to, but well done for the reminder hen.


Thank you, the chef is currently preparing an answer for you in the kitchen. Do help yourself to more bread.