Cracking the perfect poached egg?

A simple way to make the perfect poached egg?

I used to think that poaching eggs was pretty fussy and also somewhat complicated. Just how do you get them to come out of the pan just right: not too wet, not too dry, soft without being runny and also looking beautiful. It seemed that there was a real art to it.

I even once (or maybe even twice or more) started to do some research about the best way to poach eggs. I found myself reading all sorts of seemingly tricky stuff about creating a vortex (apparently some of the top chefs and hotels do this) and so on. There was also plenty of often conflicting advice about whether to use vinegar or not, the same with salt and whether to use a deep or shallow pan. Oh and to keep the pan boiling, or cover and switch off the heat…

Anyway to cut a long story I think that I may have found the way to make the perfect poached egg. And it is really very simple. Here goes…


  • An egg (or more)
  • A drop of oil
  • Some clingfilm (yes really)
Line the cup with clingfilm
Lift out the egg in its ‘bag’
Suspend the ‘bags’ over the edge of the pan


  • Boil water in a normal saucepan (no salt or vinegar needed)
  • Line a mug or cup roughly with clingfilm and crack the egg into it with a drop of oil (any kind)
  • Think of the clingfilm being a little bag for the egg
  • Lift the bag out of the cup and place in the boiling water with the top of the bag over the edge of the pan (see picture)
  • You can do this with several eggs in separate packets around the pan
  • Cover the pan and turn the heat down or even off
  • Check for when the eggs are at the desired consistency (up to ten minutes)

Enjoy the perfect poached egg!

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