Sunday, October 14, 2007

France vs. US - scrambled eggs

Perhaps you are reading this while dousing your freedom fries in ketchup or savoring some freedom toast with syrup, but believe it or not, there is yet another thing that the French and the US disagree upon; scrambled eggs. I know that it is hard to believe, but there are actually different schools of thought as to how to make a proper scrambled egg. Within my own household, I found disagreement as to what constituted "perfect" eggs, so why should it be any different between two love/hate countries like ours.

The methods of scrambling eggs are varied but the distinct difference between US and French scrambles is the cooking technique. The French method requires cooking the eggs over a double boiler with a pat of butter, stirring the eggs continuously for close to thirty minutes. The end result is more creamy and less curdy then the American cousin. The USA version (or versions, depending on where you look)uses a skillet and the end result has fluffy curds of varying sizes. There are those who add cream, like Martha Stewart and purists (like moi) who only add a tablespoon of water to our eggs before they hit the pan. Some like their eggs with bits of brown but the consensus in the egg-eating community is that eggs shouldn't be browned, but only just set.

So, who cares, right? Ah, but think on this, my ovumphile friends (Yes, I just made that word up): something as basic as a scrambled egg can be very different to Frank and Francoise. My husband and I, just this morning, had a surprisingly heated discussion on our preferred methods. I guess my point on this is that it's easy to assume that the meaning of basic things is universal. We've known since childhood what "scrambled egg" or "love" or "family" or "freedom" means, so we assume that when others talk about them, we know what they mean. People do this, families do this, countries do this. The more we can step outside of our own shell (yes, pun intended) and check out different ways of doing familiar things, the better I think.

So, vive le difference, and maybe try your scramble (or poached or shirred or fried or...)eggs from a different perspective.


Lorraine said...

Eggcellent perspective. (I crack (get it? crack?) myself up).

I have never tried the French method (sacre bleu!), mostly because when I've got a jones on for some scrambled eggs I want 'em NOW and that 30 minute cook time thing gets in the way of immediate gratification. I should try it sometime though, in the interest of world peace, if not just a plate of creamy (yum) eggs.

DebraK from ~the Bunnies Bungalow~ said...

Here I sit eating what...a scrambled egg sandwich! I did the most unthinkable of things.....cooked it in the microwave, then slathered it with ketchup! Now that's good eatin!


Anne said...

I don't add anything to my scrambled eggs, no water, no milk. I take 2-4 eggs and remove all but one yoke, beat with a fork and scramble in a skillet until set. Taking out most of the yokes cuts down on cholesterol and makes them more fluffy.

rebekka said...

Haha! Awesome!

I only eat French style...with cream a la Martha!

Buck said...

I recently saw an old Julia Child clip (it was in black and white) where she demonstrated the proper way to make an omelet.
Loved it!
Now, I can turn out a pretty decent omelet that Julia would enjoy. And that just makes me feel good every time I do it.

BTW - I love your blog and I'm glad you got the screen-freezing thing taken care of!

Seattle Coffee Girl said...

I'm a big fan of baked eggs, myself. It gives the chef a big fat break...butter a ramekin, crack an egg or two, add a pat of butter and some thyme if you wish, then bake it. I can read the Sunday paper while it bakes, and I don't have to deal with the comments from the peanut gallery about "no runnies, please." (My clan hates runny scrambled eggs.) Now your post has made me hungry!