Wednesday, April 30, 2014

How Doris Coddled Her Egg

MY EYES LIT UP when I saw Coddled Eggs were on the menu of a foxy cafe at Ponsonby Central, I had to order it. It arrived in all it’s glory with accoutrements. And what a disappointment, the eggs were hard boiled. They said give it another try next time. I did, by which time chef was advised not to overcook the egg. Not much better. Third time lucky? Not likely! The egg was popped into the microwave and served almost raw swimming in cream. I told them they should just take their Coddled Eggs off the menu. Last time I looked, it was still there, waiting to snare another unsuspecting fan.

   So when I visited Doris in Pirongia, I recounted my coddled egg saga. She immediately brought out her Royal Worcester Egg Coddlers and proceeded to show me her way of making coddled egg for breakfast.
   She had just collected the 6 eggs from the farmette hen house that morning. She has 6 hens and they are happy hens. They are named after aunts and old family friends: Aileen Tregurtha, Trixie Christmas, Myrtle Collier, Avis Taylor, Armorel Rennie and Romola Murray. I kid you not. She has a roll call list on the side of the fridge and recognises each and every one by their feathers. I asked where the rooster was, only to be given a withering look. Romola, Myrtle, Trixie and co don’t need a rooster to lay eggs. Doris did provide an anecdote  about laying eggs but I will not repeat it.

   Doris warmed the egg coddler first (her short cut was pouring boiling water over and into it). Suitably warmed, coat the inner surface with butter which invariably will melt or soften. She ran to her herb garden in her pinny and picked chive, marjoram and parsley. She finely chopped up the herbs (separately). After salting and grinding pepper into the coddler, she added the finely chopped chive and marjoram. The butter would aid the herbs, pepper and salt to stick to the sides as well. Break an egg into the coddler and sprinkle the chopped parsley on top, and before screwing on the lid, season again with salt and pepper on top).

   Immerse the coddler into a pot of boiling water, the water level should cover the lid. Boil away for 5 minutes. The egg will be perfectly coddled and ready to be savoured. And it was so good. I’m now on the hunt for egg coddlers. Egg coddlers are not in vogue and I will be keeping an eye out at my former prop haunts, Trade Me or eBay. Or Smith & Caugheys might have them.

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