Upgrade Sunny-Side Up Eggs By Deglazing Your Pan

It's common knowledge that eggs are an extremely versatile ingredient that can be prepared in a ton of different ways. Scrambled, boiled, baked, shirred, the list goes on. Sunny side up is just one example of how to cook them and, arguably, makes some of the best looking eggs out there. The bright yolk stands out against the stark white, cooked egg white, practically begging you to pierce it with a piece of bacon and let all that creamy goodness drape over your avocado toast. Sunny side up eggs are often served on top of, inside (think BLT's), or with other ingredients because, on their own, they just taste like a simple egg. But there's an easy way to amp up the flavor.

It involves deglazing your frying pan with vinegar after you've cooked your eggs. Deglazing is essentially adding some type of liquid to the hot pan to release any bits of cooked food that remains behind. Usually, these bits are browned and caramelized and have wonderful, rich flavor. So, when they are released with a liquid, you've got a delicious sauce to use. Vinegar might sound like an interesting choice, but it's actually pretty genius because it offers a sharp contrast to the thick, creamy yolk, giving an extra layer of flavor to an otherwise unadorned dish.

Reduced sherry vinegar makes a delicious sauce for eggs

For the best flavor, fry your sunny side up eggs in butter. Melt it in a frying pan and then fry your eggs until the whites are fully cooked but the yolk remains golden and runny. You don't want to flip your eggs or your yolks won't be so sunny after all. When they're done, transfer the eggs to a plate but leave the heat on under the frying pan. Add a couple of tablespoons of sherry vinegar or other good wine vinegar to the pan and let it reduce by half. Gently swirl the pan and scrape the bottom with a spatula to release any bits of egg that have stuck to the bottom. This will also help to emulsify the butter and vinegar. Once reduced, drizzle the sauce over the eggs.

The reduction should be rich and full of tangy flavor, complementing the mild eggs beautifully. You can garnish with parsley or another soft herb and serve with toasted sourdough bread, roasted fingerling potatoes, your favorite breakfast meat, or whatever else sounds good. Truth be told, these eggs would be just as delicious for breakfast as they'd be with lunch or dinner accompanied by a great glass of wine.

Put these eggs on almost anything

Making these eggs the star of the show (or, rather, plate) is a great idea. But, you can also treat these eggs the way you already like your sunny side up eggs, meaning, put them on top of sandwiches like croque madame, on top of a salad, like a classic Caesar or a spin on a Cobb, on top of a bowl of ramen, on chilaquiles, breakfast pizza, or simply resting on a warm English muffin with ripe avocado.

Although it's possible to cook sunny side up eggs in the oven, it's best to use the frying method with this recipe since you'll be deglazing to make the sauce, and you'll want to both keep the heat steady (but not too high) and keep an eye on the reduction to know when it's ready.

This isn't the only way vinegar can be beneficial to eggs in the kitchen; adding a bit of vinegar in simmering water is key to creating perfectly poached eggs, and adding it to boiling water for boiled eggs makes them easier to peel. And let's not forget that egg yolk-based hollandaise sauce just isn't the same without a bit of vinegar in it.