A few days ago, I went to prepare a couple eggs for Bob's breakfast. I thought to myself that I really should poach them for the healthiest prep possible, but I was in a time crunch and didn't really have the extra five minutes to wait for water to boil on my ancient Jenn-Aire electric stovetop. And that led me to thinking of Bob Ross' post about poaching scrambled eggs and somehow that led me to think of poaching a fried egg. That is, instead of the full immersion of poaching or the full fat of skillet frying , why not poach-fry the egg in a puddle of water just deep enough to float the egg, seasoned with butter and salt, but wherein most of the butter calories and cholesterol would stay in the skillet?
So I tried that. "Pried" would not only be an accurate way to describe the combination of 'poached' and 'fried', it also describes how the egg came out of the pan. Too little water (about 1/4 c)--it cooked out of the pan and the egg stuck to the dry stainless surface (it's a tiny 6" All-Clad skillet).
So this morning I tried again. Same 1/8" slice of butter, more water (about 1/2 inch in the bottom of the pan), slightly lower heat, salt on the egg once it was in the pan. Cooked on one side about two minutes with a little tilting and basting, then flipped for about 20 seconds to set the top, then flipped upright onto the warm plate. There was about 1/4" cup liquid left in the skillet.
Bob, unaware that I had been experimenting with his food this week, volunteered, "What did you do to these eggs? These are GREAT!" I served them with a nuked square of the tomato-oniony Potatoes Chanteduc that I posted about yesterday and a little cup of peeled ruby grapefruit segments.
His conclusion: superior to either fried or poached. Namely: 1) firm, well-cooked white with perfectly undercooked yolk, 2) not greasy, 3) pure egg flavor with an infused mild salt flavor as if the egg were salted in utero, and 4) and not watery or "sac-y"--Bob's description for the jellyish texture of the white on a poached egg which, unbeknownst to me until this morning, he has never cared for. He just "put up with it" in the belief that poached eggs were healthier and that was the trade-off that had to be tolerated.