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A Hard-Boiled Writer Eggs Himself On

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A Hard-Boiled Writer Eggs Himself On


A Hard-Boiled Writer Eggs Himself On

A Hard-Boiled Writer Eggs Himself On

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  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Freelance food writer Paul Adams has tried an amusing variety of methods to cook an egg in its shell, from dishwasher (it works!) to steam iron (not such a hot idea). Lately, he debunked an Internet hoax that suggested the two cell-phone method.


In the food section of the New York Times, you can find the ubiquitous recipes, restaurant reviews and special features. In the March 8th edition, freelancer Paul Adams wrote about an egg and how he tried to cook it with two cell phones. He's on the line with us from Manhattan. Hi, Paul.

Mr. PAUL ADAMS (Freelance Food Writer): Hi.

HANSEN: Describe the procedure as briefly as you can.

ADAMS: I read an instruction on the web for how to cook an egg with two cell phones. You call one phone with the other, place them so their antennas are pointing at each other, place the raw egg in between. It didn't say how long to leave it so I left it for an hour and a half. Somehow the radiation is supposed to cook the egg, which has frightening implications for our heads.

HANSEN: Did it work?

ADAMS: It did not work.

HANSEN: It did not work. And the origin of the idea, you say you found it on the Internet?

ADAMS: It was circulating and after I tried the experiment I tracked it down and it turns out it's from a hoax newspaper from 2000 from the U.K.

HANSEN: All right. But this intrigued you because you are in many ways an egg man. I mean, explain the many ways you've cooked or tried to cook an egg.

ADAMS: Well, more since the cell phone experiment than before, but I've tried now cooking an egg on a radiator and in a drip coffeemaker and under an iron.

HANSEN: Under an iron?

ADAMS: Wrap it in foil, put a hot iron on top, wait a few minutes. It's a beautiful fried egg.

HANSEN: Oh, so you smash the egg?

ADAMS: I cracked it.

HANSEN: You cracked it. Have you ever fried one on the sidewalk?

ADAMS: I don't think that would get hot enough, certainly not in New York.

HANSEN: Coffeemaker, dishwasher?

ADAMS: A dishwasher, great for poaching fish, poach an egg, wrap it so it doesn't take soapy. The dishwasher gets up to about 160 degrees, burns up the protein, delicious.

HANSEN: We reached you in a test kitchen in Manhattan. Are you working with eggs?

ADAMS: I am actually working with eggs today. I'm long cooking a dozen eggs. I'm cooking them for 12 hours at 164 degrees, which supposedly is supposed to turn them slightly brown and make them very tender and nutty tasting.

HANSEN: What's up with you and eggs?

ADAMS: They're just easy to work with. They're versatile, they're simple. You don't have to season them first. They change color while they cook so it's easy to monitor their progress. They're cheap, they're pre-packaged in shells and they're good for test bed ingredients.

HANSEN: And good subjects for writing, right?

ADAMS: Definitely.

HANSEN: Paul Adams is a freelance food writer and he joined us on the phone from a test kitchen somewhere in Manhattan. Paul, thanks a lot.

ADAMS: You're welcome. Thank you.

(Soundbite of Beatles song):

Mr. Paul McCartney: (Singing) I am the egg man. I am the egg man. I am the Walrus, coo, coo, ca, choo.

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