Use fresh eggs for best results. Fresher eggs tend to hold their shape better during poaching.
Bring a pot of water to a gentle simmer, not a rolling boil. Bubbles should rise slowly to the surface.
Add a splash of vinegar (white or apple cider) to the simmering water. This helps coagulate the egg whites faster, leading to neater poaching.
Swirl the water gently using a spoon to create a whirlpool before adding the egg. This helps the egg whites wrap around the yolk.
Crack the egg into a small bowl before gently sliding it into the simmering water. This prevents shells from accidentally falling in.
Use a slotted spoon to gently lift the egg from the water when it's done. Hold the spoon against the edge of the pot to drain excess water.
Poach the egg for about 3-4 minutes for a runny yolk or 5-6 minutes for a firmer yolk. Adjust the time based on your preference.
To check if the egg is done, gently touch the yolk. It should feel slightly firm but still have some give for a runny yolk.