The Miracle of the Microwave?
Part 1 in a series: Perfect Scrambled Eggs
If you’re like most people, you use the microwave 90% of the time to reheat leftovers: Pizza, Mac & Cheese or to reheat your lukewarm coffee. You might occasionally go wild and actually use it to cook some frozen peas or even an ear of fresh corn…
In short, we don’t tend to think of the microwave as a true oven but as a handy gizmo to reheat food, right?
Well, believe it or not, there are a few foods that the microwave oven cooks better than the stovetop or the conventional oven and does it faster with very little cleanup!
The Microwave Oven makes Spectacular Scrambled Eggs!
One of life’s simplest pleasures is a plate of perfectly cooked Scrambled eggs and you can do it in the microwave, not only faster but better!
There are a few rules to remember:
The microwave SUCKS at cooking any other kind of eggs! DO NOT put whole eggs in the shell in the microwave unless you enjoy cleaning! They WILL explode!!! Fried eggs? Forget it! The yolks turn to rocks long before the whites get even close to cooked!
Figure approximately 35-40 seconds per scrambled egg.
If they look cooked in the microwave, they will be overcooked on the plate!!! We will cover this in detail.
It’s best to use a glass bowl so you can watch the progress of the eggs.
At the very least, a whisk. Ideally a stick blender with a whisk attachment or a stand mixer.
Whole milk, Half & Half or if you want really rich eggs, Cream
Salt & Pepper
As you can see here, we have a Glass bowl with four eggs.
Before whisking, put 1 to 1-1/2 tablespoons of butter into a small bowl and microwave for 30 seconds or until melted. Set bowl next to eggs. Have container of milk, Half & Half or Cream nearby.
If using a stick blender, do NOT add any milk/cream or butter yet! Start with just the eggs! start the whisk and gently drop it into the eggs. Because of the nature of Albumen, (the whites) tend to congeal and will not easily splatter when the whisk hits the eggs.
After the eggs are well combined, then add the milk/cream and whisk to combine. Continue whisking when adding the melted butter so that the warm butter will disperse and not congeal into a blob when hitting the cold eggs.
Now it’s time for Microwave Magic! Place a plate over the bowl and place in the microwave and set the time for 2 minutes, 30 seconds. Microwave on ‘High’ and wait and watch. After 1 minute, you should see “something” happening.
Looking through the window of the microwave, there appears to be a rising ring of egg sitting in a pool of liquid egg. Stop the microwave and stir with a fork. (We show the various stages of the eggs cooking on the countertop but you don’t need to pull the bowl out. We did that for clarity in the photos).
Very important: The eggs are continuing to cook through all these stages so, to repeat: “If it looks cooked in the microwave, it will be overcooked on the plate!”
It looks pretty liquidy but it’s going to firm up fast so do not turn your back on the microwave! Continue cooking for another 30-45 seconds and it should look like this:
There’s still a lot of uncooked egg but, again, it’s going to finish very quickly! Continue cooking for another 30 seconds and it will begin to firm up very quickly, looking like this:
At this point, the eggs are almost finished. If you like your scrambled eggs “soft”, you can gently stir the eggs and let them rest. If you leave them on the countertop covered for a minute or so, your soft scrambled eggs will be perfect. Even though the eggs are not 100% “scrambled”, i.e. there is still some liquid egg in the bottom, it is 100% cooked and, left alone, will firm up.
Assuming you want fluffy but not overdone scrambled eggs, resume cooking for only another 15 to 20 seconds and it will look like this: Very moist Scrambled Eggs but guaranteed, by the time you serve them, there will be NO liquid egg running on your plate. It should look like this:
The Microwave Oven is truly an oven and what it does well, it does better than ANY OTHER OVEN and Scrambled Eggs are made for the Microwave!
Finally, plate your scrambled eggs, add salt & pepper and maybe some greenery for garnish.
The Microwave Oven is truly a miracle machine for certain foods and Scrambled Eggs is #1!
Coming up next for the Microwave? Chocolate!!!