Cheesy Coddled Eggs with Smoked Fish,
Sorrel & Dill
I remember an advert, when I was growing up, it was by the British Egg Marketing Board, and went like this: male guest in a typical boarding house, sits at the breakfast table, the harridan land lady marches in and barks……..“how do you like your eggs, fried or boiled?”.……the guest drifts off into an eggy day-dream of how many other ways an egg could be cooked and served, and fantasises about eggs that are….“kedgeree, scrambled, poached, sunny side up, eggs en cocotte or coddled”……emerging from his reverie, he replies…..”Eggs risotto please Mrs Burridge”…..to which she responds…..“is that fried or boiled?!”…..ask most people of my generation, and they will all remember this and earlier adverts, and in that sense, the advert certainly worked! I always remember wondering what on earth a coddled egg was, as they were often mentioned in my Malcolm Saville and Enid Blyton books too!
According to an online dictionary of cooking terms, a coddled egg is:
The word coddling refers to a cooking technique, usually involving eggs, in which the egg is cracked into a small buttered dish or ramekin, along with seasonings and sometimes other ingredients, and then partially immersed in a hot water bath (or bain-marie) for several minutes.
Some methods of coddling involve baking the egg, in the water bath, in the oven. Or it can be simmered in the water bath on the stovetop.
The degree of doneness achieved depends on how long the egg is cooked. But as the word “coddle” suggests, it is a gentle cooking method, resulting in a soft texture, with a yolk still at least partially runny (although the white should not be liquid).
Although my mum never coddled an egg, at least not whilst I was still living at home, we often had baked Swiss Eggs, omelettes, kedgeree, scrambled eggs, poached eggs and a Royal Navy breakfast dish called “Cheesy, Hammy, Eggy” which comprised buttered toast with sliced cooked ham, topped with melted cheese and a poached egg. We also often had curried eggs, so mum was more than just a “fried and boiled” egg cook! But, the term coddled eggs still fascinated me, and when I was in my late teens, I discovered an old Royal Worcester egg coddler in a small antique shop, which I bought, and which was the first in a collection of egg coddlers that I still have today.
However, I appreciate kitchenalia in all forms, so when I was asked by ÄGGCØDDLER if I would like to receive their set of egg coddlers for review, I was happy to accept. I was sent a set of four beautiful Scandinavian egg coddlers, complete with their seals (a silicon band that hooks around the lid) and also a very informative leaflet on how to coddle eggs with some simple recipe ideas. The coddlers are simply and yet very stylish, with different coloured lids, and came packed in individual boxes. They hold a large egg with additional ingredients with ease, and were extremely easy to use.
Jois Lundgren, founder of ÄGGCØDDLER says of his product: “The Scandinavian ÄGGCØDDLER (derived from its less-famous English relative – the egg coddler) is a simple idea – it’s a porcelain cup with a lid in which amazing egg delicacies are born. What you create is pretty much only limited by your imagination……ÄGGCØDDLERs are great for breakfast, brunch, a snack, or whenever you feel a little peckish and want a treat.” I have to say I had a bit of a giggle at his tongue in cheek description that they were derived from “their less-famous English relative – the egg coddler!!” Regardless of where egg coddlers first came from, these coddlers have been added to my more traditional collection, and WILL be regularly used many times.
So, what did I coddle in my new ÄGGCØDDLERS? I decided to cook a high tea dish of smoked fish with fresh sorrel, dill, capers and cheese, along with four of my hen’s finest free-range eggs. The combination was wonderful, with soft flakes of smoked fish (haddock), the slightly astringent taste of sorrel, aromatic dill, sharp and acidic capers and the salty richness of grated Parmesan cheese all blending so well with the iron richness of egg yolk and soft egg white. We enjoyed TWO coddled eggs each, along with some rye crisp-breads…..it was made and on the table in under fifteen minutes.
My delicious recipe for Cheesy Coddled Eggs with Smoked Fish, Sorrel & Dill is a perfect addition to Dom of Belleau Kitchen’s monthly Simply Eggcellent challenge, and as it is “anything goes” this month, my coddled eggs have been added. If you have any egg coddlers lurking in the back of your cupboards, DO liberate them in an attempt to go beyond “fried or boiled” eggs! Or, why not pop over to ÄGGCØDDLER to buy some coddlers, their site also boasts some wonderful recipes here: ÄGGCØDDLER Recipes. Jazz up your breakfast and tea tables, and get coddling! Karen
Disclaimer: I received a set of four ÄGGCØDDLERS free of charge; I was not asked to promote them or share my findings here, but I chose to do so as I was so impressed with the product, I wanted to share my review and recipe with my readers.