Smoked Eggs: The Final Frontier of Egg Cookery
Give your poacher a break
Hard-boiled eggs and toast is hard to beat, nutrition-wise. Flavor-wise, the meal can get a little tiresome. Same goes for scrambled, poached, or fried eggs if you’re running them on constant rotation. Egg Shop’s Chef Nick Korbee has a solution: smoked eggs. Though they take a bit longer to make than the average scramble, smoked eggs offer a distinct flavor intensity.
“Smoked eggs remind me of smoked mozzarella both in texture and in flavor,” Chef Korbee told me in an email. He said his smoked eggs are probably the most similar to hard-boiled eggs in terms of texture, but they’re so much more versatile. Because of their similarities with mozzarella, Korbee often uses smoked eggs in a caprese salad with heirloom tomatoes, basil, and a balsamic reduction. Smoked eggs work perfectly when grated over grilled corn to create a breakfasty twist on elotes, he said. “Think smoked egg cotija."
Luckily, you don’t need a massive smoker to make your own version of Korbee’s eggs. The chef recommends a stovetop smoker, which is actually surprisingly affordable (this one from Bed Bath & Beyond is $20). An oven-safe smoker bag—which come with wood chips—is an even cheaper alternative (this $6 one on Amazon would work nicely). While Korbee explained that you can even place a few eggs right on the grates of your backyard grill, that process does take a bit longer. Of course, if you’re already planning to fire up the grill, Korbee definitely recommends throwing on a few eggs as well “as an added bonus.”
Once you’ve smoked your eggs, Korbee told me that they’re just as easy to peel as any other boiled egg—they should simply be cooled in an ice bath first. “I roll the egg on a counter top covered with a kitchen towel to crack the shell all over, then I carefully peel by hand.” Though many people like to peel eggs under running water, Korbee doesn’t recommend it, as it can “diminish the smoked flavor on the outer edge of the egg.”
Korbee said that smoked eggs will keep for a week in the refrigerator, but they’re most potently smokey within the first three days.