Get up to speed with the rapidly evolving sous vide movement. Grab your immersion circulator (it doesn’t have to be professional-kitchen grade!) and a copy of Lisa Fetterman’s Sous Vide at Home. The tech entrepreneur is the creator of Nomiku, one of the most popular circulators on the market, and her book shows you how to pull off restaurant-quality fare on the regular. Ready to learn how to make deep-fried egg yolks?
If your heart is full of adventure but is otherwise very healthy, I recommend these crunchy, gooey treats. The secret behind this culinary marvel lies in cooking the egg at precisely 64°C. This results in yolks that are malleable when cold but still “ooze” when hot. Breading the yolks while they’re cold and still firm and then quickly deep-frying them to reheat produces an incredibly indulgent combo: a crunchy shell contrasted with a warm, molten inside. Bite sized but hugely satisfying, they make great appetizers but are also a jaw-dropping garnish for a simple green salad — a sort of glorious hybrid of a poached egg and a crouton.
Do-Ahead Strategy: The cooked and cooled eggs can be refrigerated for up to 1 week before you prepare the yolks for deep-frying. Once the egg yolks are fried, they retain their heat well and can be kept at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes.
Pro Tip: I prefer the lighter, more irregular pieces of panko over regular breadcrumbs because they result in a supercrisp, airy crust and maximum crunchy pleasure time.
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 cup panko
- canola or other vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon or fleur de sel)
- 4 small dill leaves, for garnish (optional)
For the yolks
Preheat your sous vide water bath to 64°C (147.2°F).
When the water reaches the target temperature, using a slotted spoon, carefully lower the eggs (shell and all) directly into the water bath and cook for 1 hour.
When the eggs are ready, using the slotted spoon, transfer them to an ice water bath and chill until completely cold, about 20 minutes.
Crack 1 egg and drop it into a bowl. Using your fingers, gently separate the yolk from the white (which will be very delicate and easily fall away) and transfer the yolk to a small plate, then discard the white. Don’t worry if a small amount of white remains on the yolk; it will be covered by the bread crumbs. Repeat with the remaining eggs.
Put ¼ cup of the bread crumbs onto a plate or into a shallow bowl large enough to accommodate the yolks in a single layer with about 1 inch between them. Place the yolks onto the bed of crumbs and, using your fingertips or a spoon, carefully turn the yolks to coat completely. If necessary, gently press the crumbs onto the yolks to make sure they adhere. When all of the yolks are coated, sprinkle the remaining ¼ cup of bread crumbs on top (to “bury” the yolks) and transfer the plate of crumb-covered yolks to the refrigerator for 15 minutes. This cooling step helps to ensure an even crust that won’t separate from the yolk.
Line a dinner plate with paper towels and place near the stove. Pour the oil to a depth of about 2 inches into a saucepan and place over medium heat. The oil should come no more than one third of the way up the side of the pan to ensure it will not boil over the rim once the yolks are added. Heat the oil to 350°F on a high-heat thermometer, or until a few breadcrumbs dropped into the hot oil sizzle on contact and then brown within a couple of seconds.
Using the slotted spoon, carefully lower a breaded egg yolk into the hot oil and fry until deep golden brown, 30 to 60 seconds. As it fries, use the slotted spoon to move it around in the oil so that it browns evenly and doesn’t rest on the bottom of the pan. Transfer the fried yolk to the towel-lined plate and season immediately with a pinch of the sea salt. Repeat with the remaining egg yolks, frying them one at a time. Avoid the temptation to fry more than a single yolk at a time, because if they stay in the oil too long, you’ll end up with hard-cooked yolks, defeating the whole purpose.
To serve, garnish each fried yolk with a dill leaf.