Hard-boiling is perfect for eggs that aren’t farm-fresh because older eggs peel easier. This method gives you whites that are firm, not rubbery, and yolks that are cooked through but not dry and flaky. A dip in an ice bath cools any residual heat so green rings don’t form around the yolks. We call for a specific amount of water—2 quarts—to eliminate variables and keep the recipe as foolproof as possible. Still, water in pots of different sizes, materials, and thicknesses will heat and cool at slightly different rates, so if you find the doneness isn’t to your liking, adjust the time the eggs stand in the water accordingly. Store them refrigerated in their shells for up to 1 week.
2 qt. water
4 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
How to Make It
Pour 2 quarts water into a medium saucepan. Gently add eggs, being careful not to crack the shells. Bring water to a boil over high. The minute the water boils, turn off the heat, move the pan to a cold burner (eliminating the variable of how long it takes your particular burner to cool), and cover the pan. Let stand 12 minutes. Meanwhile, fill a medium bowl with ice and water. After exactly 12 minutes, pull eggs out with a slotted spoon, and plunge them into the ice bath. Let stand 5 minutes, 10 if you're going to store them for later. Gently crack eggs, and remove shells. Sprinkle evenly with salt and pepper after slicing in half so the yolks get seasoned, too.