Six hour flight and four minute eggs
I'm back after a week in the UK visiting R*'s mum and visiting the part of the country where he grew up and went to school.
Some critics might say that the UK is not the place for foodies to visit, especially outside of London. That of course is ridiculous and it didn't take me long to start making some new food discoveries in the UK.
R* had already been in the UK for work, and he picked me up at the Birmingham Airport and drove me to his mum's house in Kidderminster. It was about 8:30 a.m. when I got there and she had breakfast waiting: Alpen cereal, grain toast, Golden Shred marmalade and four minute eggs.
How awkward. I wasn't quite sure how to eat the four minute egg his mum served me. R* and his mum started discussing the merits of the precise number of minutes the egg should be cooked while I thought about the best way to whack into the egg and spoon some out. I wasn't too sure about eating a raw-ish egg. Would it be slimy?
I had heard of soft-boiled eggs and "dippy eggs" before. I even own a couple of egg cups from an Italian pottery store in North Beach, San Francisco. My egg cups look like guys' faces. I bought them as a souvenir from a visit to see XN because I thought the egg cups looked like me and R*. I use the egg cups to hold peppercorns.
They looked expectantly at me and then, sensing my awkwardness, R* explained it to me. He showed me how to use the side of the small silver spoon to tap into the egg and make a hole in the top of the egg shell. Then sprinkle salt and pepper into the hole in the eggshell. You can then use spoon to eat the egg, or dip a strip of toast into the egg. R* calls those strips of toast "soldiers."
His mum laughed and said he was too old for her to cut out his "soldiers" for home, but if he wanted to do it, he could do it himself. Since this was my first visit to their house, I was nervous about getting crumbs or egg on the table cloth or cloth napkin, so I cautiously dipped in with a spoon. I went back for a second spoonful, breaking through the orangey yolk.
The egg was velvety and rich, fresh and smooth, not quite like anything I had tasted before. Both the free-range eggs and the grain bread, his mum explained, were from the garden center and grocery about a block away from her house.
Now that I'm back I need to seek out some free-range farm fresh eggs and have a go at making them too.