"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister

A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!

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Sunday, November 01, 2009

How to Hard-Boil a Single Egg in Microwave

I posted before how I make hard-boiled egg in the microwave, for purposes of adding to noodles, which I cooked together with the egg (see here).

Some of the most common reason readers land on that post was they were looking for a way to hard-boil egg in the microwave. Here is a method for those who want only ONE egg for salads, sandwiches or as snack, not for noodles. If you would like to cook more than one egg, this post is not for you. Personally, if I am going to boil several eggs, then I would just use the stovetop, or as MaMely did, use the rice cooker.

This time, my post is about preparing hard-boiled egg in the microwave using only water, a bowl, and paper towel. NO, YOU DON'T NEED A SPECIAL GADGET FOR THIS. Please take note that my microwave is a 1.6 kW one, so if you are going to try this, you will have to modify the time and experiment until you get it right.

I also have to let you know (so you won't have to repeat this) that prior to coming up with the method below, I experimented placing an egg with cracked end inside a cup with water only, and it exploded within 30 secs (I tried 3 times, using different power levels, then I gave up). Knowing that the egg does not explode when it was with noodles, I then thought, maybe the egg should have some other "competition" for the microwave energy, so it is not too concentrated in the egg and cause sudden increase in temp then explode. Hence, I thought I would try the paper towel, soaked in water so it would not burn. The first time I did this for 2 minutes, the egg had some leaked soft egg white so I nuked 30 seconds more, and the result was perfect. The second time I tried it for 3 minutes, the egg exploded before it reached 3 minutes. The third time was for 2.5 minutes, and that is the method I describe below, which gave me perfectly hard-boiled egg. Lessen the time if you want soft-boiled.

Here's how:
1. Make a ring out of paper towel and place in a small bowl. Add water to soak the paper.
2. Using a corner of a table of your stovetop, gently crack the wider end of an egg to make a small depression. This will serve as an outlet for escaping steam and excess pressure as the egg is cooking and getting hotter.
3. Place the egg cracked end up in the middle of the bowl, supported by the paper
4. Microwave on high for 2.5 minutes (or stop as soon as you notice the depressed crack rise up so it becomes level with the rest of the shell again). You will also notice that cracks will also develop originating from this depression as the egg expands a bit while cooking.
5. Let it sit for 2 minutes. The egg will continue to cook with its heat and that of the water around.
6. Use tongs to get the egg and run it under cold tap water to stop the cooking process and to make it easier to handle and easier to peel (the cold shrinks the egg and it separates a bit from the shell).
7. Peel, slice and enjoy!


  1. Hello Manang, ang galing naman nitong tip mo. Tamang tama kasi nakatira ako now sa condo dito sa Makati kaya ang gamit ko lang ay microwave...

    Natawa nga ako kasi meron palang tip na ganito on hard boiling a single egg sa Philippines. Salamat Manang

  2. This is wonderful! Thanks for the very detailed instruction. I guess it means that hard-boiling an egg in the microwave can be a very delicate and tricky task. Kudos to you for having all that patience with the eggs that exploded in the oven as you started this experiment. I can just imagine the awful and yucky task of cleaning up the stinky mess in the oven after each explosion. :-)

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