This recipe for sunny-up eggs only calls for two ingredients, because all you need to fry an egg perfectly is some olive oil or unsalted butter and an egg. That's because the trick of learning how to make a sunny-side up egg is in the technique. And if there's anyone who knows a thing or two about cooking all of the eggs in any style, it's Nick Korbee, chef at New York City's Egg Shop. In Egg Shop: The Cookbook, Korbee reveals how to make the perfect sunny-up egg, with "a fully set white with little to no coloration from cooking and a still-liquid yolk," every time you crack an egg into a skillet.
"This method for sunny-ups is a product of volume and the necessity of multitasking as a line cook," he explains in an email. "The lower temp method is a way to ensure you never over cook the egg. At a lower temp you can crack the egg and forget about it while you prepare the other components of your eggs du jour."
The low-temp technique for frying sunny-ups doesn't have to be limited to a single egg at a time, though, and Korbee also reveals the way to make fried eggs for a crowd in this new cookbook.
"The party or griddle plate method came from my sick desire to make 45 sandwiches in under 5 minutes," he explains, and it turns out that you don't need a thousand individual skillets to make all of the fried eggs at once—though having a friend on hand is critical. "Sadly I found this is only possible with two cooks, or one multi armed Hindu deity," jokes Korbee. But the method is effective. "You can cook and hold more than 100 sunny ups rather quickly and even faster with multiple griddle plates."
Whether you're in need of all of the sunny-up eggs to make breakfast sandwiches for your next weekend brunch, or you just want to up your everyday breakfast routine with a fried egg, here are Korbee's techniques for making the perfect fried egg every single time.
The Perfect Sunny-Up
- Yields: 1 egg
Heat an ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan evenly. Crack the egg directly into the pan. Let the white set on the bottom, about 30 seconds to 1 minute, then use a silicone spatula to tap the unset white in three places around the yolk. This breaks the structure of the white that encases the yolk and allows the white to fall away from the yolk slightly and begin to cook.
Next, either turn the heat to low or place the pan in the oven. The egg will finish in about 2 minutes. Season as you wish before serving.
If the people demand sunny-ups, then sunny-ups they shall have! Making sunny-ups for a large group is as easy as preheating then oiling a griddle plate or nonstick baking sheet in a 425°F oven: 25 minutes should do. Remove the griddle or baking sheet, oil up, and crack away.
The bottom whites should set immediately, then do your spatula tap dance, turn the oven off, and put the griddle back in. As the oven cools, the eggs will finish without overcooking.
TIP: Sometimes an extra hand helps here to ensure as many eggs land on the griddle at the same time as possible.
TIP: You can hold fully cooked eggs on the griddle in the fridge until you’re ready to reheat and serve. Simply give the eggs a light spray with canola oil and cover with a sheet of plastic to keep the yolks from drying out. To reheat, remove the plastic and place the entire pan in a 450°F oven for 2 minutes.