Julia Child’s Poached Eggs

Close-up of cutting poached egg on toast TipHero

There’s a lot to love, admire and miss about Julia Child. There is, of course, her iconic and eminently enjoyable tenure on television. There’s the fact she spent World War II serving as an agent in the precursor to the CIA. There’s the fact that she introduced wider America to French cuisine and traditional European cooking techniques, and that she did so with incredible zest and good humor. Today, and perhaps most importantly, we’re loving her for how she made cooking seem so fun, with recipes too tempting not to try and a way of explaining things that demystified even the trickiest techniques. Case in point? Her poached eggs! A lot of people have never tried poaching an egg because it seems too difficult, but when you make them like Julia Child does, they seem not only delicious, but easy. Just watch.

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JULIA CHILD’S POACHED EGGS

Serves 2 to 4
Total Time: 10 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 eggs
  • Water

DIRECTIONS

  1. Bring a saucepan with 1 ­½ inches of water to a soft boil over high heat.
  2. While the water is heating up, pierce the end of each eggshell with a pin or sharp tack. This releases any trapped air and helps prevent the eggshell from cracking.
  3. Decrease the temperature to low and gently lower the whole eggs into the barely simmering water for 10 seconds. Remove eggs and allow to cool slightly.
  4. Crack an egg into a small bowl.
  5. Give the water a quick stir in the center and gently lower the egg into the water. Allow to cook for 2 ­to 4 minutes, until the whites have firmed and the yolk is still soft.
  6. Remove from the water with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel before serving.
  7. Repeat with the remaining eggs.
Poaching an egg in the style of Julia ChildTipHero

A lot of people add a splash of vinegar to their water before poaching, but Julia Child didn’t make hers that way— and if a method’s good enough for Julia, it’s good enough for us! Serve your poached eggs on their own – they’re certainly delicious enough to do so! – or enjoy on toast or Eggs Benedict style on an English muffin with Canadian bacon and hollandaise sauce.

Julia Child's poached egg recipe on toastTipHero

How do you like to eat poached eggs? Have you ever made them before, or has the method always scared you? If you’ve never tried them before, do you think you’ll give them a try now?

Recipe adapted from Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home