~What is an 'egg ring' & should you own one or two?~
Valentine's Day is next week. In our house on this special day, I always make Joe breakfast in bed, and, he returns the favor by taking me out for dinner, or, we cook a special dinner together. This year, I've decided to make: buttermilk pancakes and sunny-side up eggs. These are not just any pancakes and eggs, these are really-pretty pancakes and really-pretty eggs. Simple and pretty? Absolutely. Meet my heart-shaped egg rings!
A standard-sized egg ring is a 3 1/2"-round, 1/2" deep, stainless steel ring mold or nonstick stainless steel ring mold that resembles a big cookie cutter. It literally is "a ring around a cooking egg" sort of like a collar, that forms the cooking egg into a perfect circle. It makes for a really-pretty, professional-looking presentation. Do you need to own one or two? Culinarily, they are not a kitchen necessity. Should you invest in one or two? I recommend that you do!
Why? Because egg rings are a really versatile, time-saving kitchen tool. Besides making eggs look beautiful, they can be used to produce, pretty, even-sized pancakes too. Like a cookie cutter, an egg ring can be used to trim the crust from a slice of bread to form it into a round piece of matching toast. They are also the perfect vessel for pre-forming sausage patties (and burgers) too. If you are a "McMuffin" lover, having your toast, your egg and your sausage all the same size and shape is: sandwich perfection!
Here's how an egg ring works for eggs and pancakes:
Melt a bit of butter in a nonstick skillet over low heat (this is 1 teaspoon of butter in an 8" skillet).
Allow the egg ring to heat up a bit, about 15-30 seconds. Heating the ring will help to prevent the egg from sticking to it. A whole egg (left photo) with an unbroken yolk can be cracked and dropped inside the ring to allow it to cook sunny-side up, or, a whisked egg can be poured inside the ring (pictured above) to make a round scrambled "egg pancake". Want it over easy? Flip it over to briefly cook it on the second side. How easy was that.
In a 12" skillet, you can make 4 pancakes. Add 1/4 cup of batter to each 'ring'. Over medium heat, cook until bubbles appear on the surface. Run a paring knife around the inside perimeter, to loosen pancake from ring. Remove the mold. Flip over to cook briefly on the second side!
I have many types of culinary ring forms in my kitchen. You can buy a set of 4 same-sized egg rings for about $16.00-$20.00. Some ring sets (like the round ones pictured here) can be connected together, so you can make four eggs at one time and lift all of the rings off at the same time. Others (like the heart-shaped ones pictured here) come with handles, which makes removing the hot ring really easy!
For the same amount of money, $16.00-$20.00, you can buy graduated sets. If you can only afford one or the other, I recommend the graduated set because they are much more versatile. You can use them to form and/or cook whatever size of round- or heart-shaped anything you want. If you like slider-sized sandwiches or silver-dollar pancakes, a graduated set is the kind you'll want to purchase. They are virtually every size you could ever need for cooking, baking cookies, cake decorating, and craft projects too.
Egg Rings. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways!
~ How to: Make Croutons (& Toasts) ~ (in Categories 2, 5, 9 or 15):
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/2013)