Is It Ever Worth It To Own An Egg Topper?

The egg topper is exactly what it sounds like, an implement used to cut the tops off eggs (soft-boiled eggs, to be exact). In function, it's similar to a cigar cutter, and in both cases, there are multiple design options. The most popular types of egg toppers are in circular scissors form and in the shape of bells that fit over the topmost portion of the egg.

Is it worth it to buy an egg topper — of any variety? It all depends on how much you like soft-boiled eggs, and also, how dissatisfied you are with the conventional methods of prepping them after boiling them. These manual preparation methods, for the uninitiated, are peeling the eggshell, or placing the soft-boiled egg in an egg cup and tapping it with a spoon, so that you can remove the topmost portion of the shell. The latter method, as the description suggests, is similar to what is accomplished with an egg topper. In theory, however, an egg topper offers a cleaner, neater cut. 

In practice, egg toppers tend to function just like a butter knife — that is, if they work at all. The scissor varieties are notorious for being finicky and not cutting much of anything. The bells usually work, but still leave a jagged edge. So, if you want to enjoy the experience of soft-boiled eggs, by all means, get the topper. Just know they aren't particularly adept at their purpose — and you'll still need a knife or spoon to pry the top shell off your egg.

The world of egg utensils, and where egg toppers fit

If you're the type of person who wants to eat the style of eggs that requires the most impressive array of gadgets, then soft-boiled eggs are indeed the preferred preparation. This type of luxury is most often associated with the U.K. — where parents indoctrinate their children into the soft-boiled egg tradition by giving them this treat with soldiers (aka strips of sliced toast) for dipping into the runny yolks. Also known as dippy eggs, the dish may begin as a childhood favorite, but nostalgia makes it a popular choice for adults too.

And for soft-boiled egg connoisseurs, the topper is an essential part of the standard utensil kit and has been for more than a century. So if you're in this category, or would like to be, then it is absolutely worth it to invest in one of these implements and to become adept at its use. They tend to not be a prohibitively expensive means of helping egg enthusiasts master this extremely specialized variety of luxurious breakfasts. It offers a spectacle that can turn a mundane Sunday breakfast into an extraordinary affair. Pair the meal with a cup of strong black tea, and you'll be feeling positively British in no time.