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August 01, 2006

The Art of Boiling an Egg

Who would have thought it of the Brits? As I learnt today they have actually doing research on how to boil the perfect breakfast egg. You know the perfect egg is the one where the white is solid and the yolk a thick, creamy fluid. Funded by the organisation 'Egg Lion Quality' British researchers developed a temperature-sensitive ink that is used to stamp a logo on each egg. Invisible at room temperature it suddenly appears when the egg is boiled and has reached perfection.

Watch out for those eggs. They are supposed to be on sale in supermarkets after the summer holidays! Consumers will have a choice between hard, medium and soft boiled variations. Bon appetite!

Reading about this reminded me of a famous animated cartoon by the German humourist Loriot. An elderly couple is having an argument about the art of boiling an egg during breakfast. He prefers a soft boiled egg.

I've tried to do a translation into English for your amusement:

He:  Berta!
She: Yes ...
He:  This is a hard boiled egg!
She:  (keeps silent)
He:  This is a hard boiled egg!!!
She: I've heard you ...
He:  How long has the egg been boiled?
She: Too many eggs are bad for your health!
He:  I mean, how long has this egg been boiled ...?
She: You always want it boiled for four and a half minutes ...
He:  I know that ...
She: Why do you ask then?
He:  Because this egg cannot have been boiled for four and a half minutes!
She: But I boil your eggs for four and a half minutes every morning.
He:  How come it sometimes is too hard and sometimes too soft?
She: I don't know ... I am no chicken!
He:  Ach! ... And how do you know, when the egg is done?
She: I take it out of the water after four and a half minutes for Christ's sake!
He:  Do you use a stop-watch or something?
She: Instincts ... a housewife uses her instincts ...
He:  Instincts? What do you mean ... instincts?
She: My instincts tell me when the egg is done ...
He:  But it is hard boiled ... perhaps something is wrong with your instincts ...
She: Something is wrong with my instincts? I am working in the kitchen all day long, do the washing, keep your things in order, make the flat comfortable, look after the kids and you say, something is wrong with my instincts?
He:  Alright ... alright ... but if you use your instincts to boil an egg then it boils for four and a half minutes only by chance.
She: I don't know why you care if the egg boils for four and half minutes by chance or not - as long as it does boil for four and half minutes!
He:  It is just that I'd love to have a soft egg and not an egg that is soft by chance. I don't care how long it takes to boil!
She: Aha! You don't care ... you don't care, if I slave away for four and a half minutes in the kitchen!
He:  No - no ...
She: But you should care ... the egg has to boil for four and a half minutes ...
He:  That's exactly what I said ...
She: But you said a moment ago that you didn't care!
He:  All I want is a soft boiled egg ...
She: Heavens, aren't men crude!
He  (muttering) I shall kill her ... tomorrow I shall kill her!

Well, with the newfangled eggs described above catastrophes like that will be easily avoided in the future!

Posted by Mausi at August 1, 2006 06:52 PM

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