I'm pregnant, so in an effort to get the amount of protein I'm supposed to be having each day, I've opted to start off my morning with 2 boiled eggs. There are many variations out there of how to boil the perfect egg, without under-cooking it or over-cooking it, which can result in an unsightly green/gray rim around the yolk.

In my culinary school days at French Culinary Institute in NYC, we made many a Salade Nicoise, which (you guessed it) consists of boiled eggs. The French are very particular about their boiled eggs, and we practiced and practiced for days with the following formula for boiling the perfect egg: (read on for instructions)

* Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
* Add eggs to water carefully, to avoid cracking any shells.
* Boil for 11 minutes (this is when you need to pull out that kitchen timer!).
* Drain the hot water and shock the eggs in an ice bath.
* Cool eggs completely before peeling.

(Aside: Once, as punishment for talking too much during aculinary class, I was forced to create 30 omelettes in front of theentire class. As it turns out, the French are also very particularabout having no color on their omelettes. But that's another post foranother day!)

Photo: Woodleywonderworks on Flickr.