The internet is filled with various hacks that purportedly peel hard-boiled eggs in a matter of seconds but, most of the time, they don't really work out as advertised.
However, when TODAY senior food stylist Ashley Holt witnessed her friend performing a feat of culinary egg magic, she couldn't resist trying it out.
"My friend actually did this and I could not believe this was a thing!” Holt told the 3rd hour of TODAY co-hosts Wednesday.
Unfortunately, this particular trick only seems to work under very specific circumstances ... and it's not a good idea if you need to peel a lot of eggs for a crowd.
The trick involves cracking the top and bottom of a hard-boiled egg, then peeling off just a little bit of the shell on both ends. After it’s peeled, blow — yes, with your mouth! — on one end of the egg and, if all goes well, the peeled egg should shoot right out of its shell.
Holt tried the trick once and it worked like magic! But things didn't quite work out when she presented the hack to the 3rd hour of TODAY co-hosts.
“You didn’t tell us that was coming, Ashley!” Sheinelle Jones exclaimed as Holt started blowing on the egg.
Craig Melvin was also shocked.
"Oh, that's pretty sanitary," Al Roker quipped.
Holt clarified that this trick is only meant to be utilized when de-shelling eggs for a personal meal, not when preparing food for a crowd. Unfortunately, however, many of the blown-out eggs ended up totally broken during the show demo. The food stylist and professional baker hypothesized that the trick likely only works when eggs are taken right out of the water, otherwise they get too dry.
Earlier this month, another egg-peeling hack went viral on Twitter, racking up nearly 4 million views in a few days. That trick involves dropping a boiled egg in a cup of water and shaking it around for a few seconds to loosen the shell. While it worked perfectly in the video (of course), many people on social media commented that the trick didn’t go so smoothly for them.
There are several factors that likely contribute to the success or failure of these hacks, including the freshness of the eggs before they're boiled and how long they’ve been sitting in the shell after being cooked.
While the blowing and shaking methods might be flashy, Al's favorite method for peeling hard-boiled eggs is both reliable and sanitary.
“Put your egg in boiling water for 12 minutes," he advised. "After you’ve boiled your egg for 12 minutes, you put it in ice water for five. Egg peels perfectly every time."
The idea behind this chef-approved method is that the hot egg gets shocked by the cold water so it shrinks up slightly away from the shell. This trick works best if you crack the egg while it’s still slightly warm, which allows the cold water to work more effectively.
Time to get cracking, egg lovers.