Sundry Topics

Michael Ruhlman's Weekend Broken-Yolk Fried Egg Sandwich

By • April 18, 2014 • 36 Comments

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Food writer and cookbook author Michael Ruhlman recently stopped by Food52 HQ to talk to us about his latest book, Egg -- which we're currently selling, signed, on Provisions. We thought it only fitting that he show us his favorite way to cook one of our kitchens' most versatile ingredients.

Today, he's explaining how to make his beloved Broken-Yolk Fried Egg Sandwich -- we suggest you make one for breakfast this weekend.

My father taught me this sandwich when I was in fifth grade, and it was so good that I continued to make it throughout my youth. To this day, I often make it for a quick Saturday lunch. And now I include my son James, who loves it too.

One of the pleasures of this preparation is that it turns what would otherwise be a mistake -- a broken yolk -- into an advantage. It also results in its own unique flavor, completely different from both scrambled eggs and a fried egg. I always serve it on soft white bread with a generous smear of Hellmann's mayo. Use a non-stick pan for this if you have one -- it makes the egg easier to flip.

 

Weekend Broken-Yolk Fried Egg Sandwich 

Serves 1 hurried father, mother, or fifth grader

1 tablespoon butter
2 eggs, cracked into a bowl, yolks poked once to break them
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Mayonnaise
2 pieces soft sandwich bread

Put a pan (preferably nonstick) over medium-low heat and allow it to get hot, about 5 minutes. Add the butter and allow it to melt completely. As the water cooks out of it, it will froth. 

  

When the frothing seems to be at its peak, pour in the eggs and give the pan an immediate shake to prevent the eggs from sticking. Season the eggs with salt and pepper and cook for 1 minute.

Flip the eggs and cook until the white is just set, about 1 minute more. Meanwhile, spread as much or as little mayonnaise on the sandwich bread as you wish. 

When the eggs are done, pour them out onto the bread, folding them over so that the eggs don't fop over the edges of the bread.

Cover the eggs with the other piece of bread and eat with a glass of milk. I usually eat there next to the stove; I don't even use a plate.

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here. 

Tell us: What does your favorite egg sandwich look like?

Photos by James Ransom

Jump to Comments (36)

Tags: michael ruhlman, sundry topics, egg sandwich, breakfast, how-to & DIY

Comments (36)

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about 1 month ago HapppyBee

What is old news to some is a revelation to others. If you have already been doing this egg sandwich, no need to say so. Let those who haven't seen it before learn and enjoy! Personally, I'm going to give it a go and love the story of learning to make it in the fifth grade. My version has been to fry an egg, break the yolk once in the pan (If I haven't already done that getting it in there) flip it for just a sec and put on toasted, buttered bread with ketchup and bacon. Been doing that since the fourth grade. Ha!

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5 months ago marymary

My new favorite egg sandwiches were inspired by Starbuck's. We equally enjoy a spinach-eggwhite-pico de gallo-feta wrap and a Canadian ham-egg-mustard-gruyere ciabatta sandwich with the eggs cooked as Michael does above. In fact, that's how I usually serve "scrambled eggs". I don't like them all whisked together. I've never had an egg sandwich with mayo, so I'll give that a try soon. Thanks, Michael. I look forward to reading your book!

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5 months ago spot

Try adding thinly sliced cucumbers to your sandwich, Michael! I have vague memories of having fried egg-mayo-cuke sandwiches in Taiwan when I was a child. I don't know if it was a figment of my imagination, but to this day, I still love that combination.

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5 months ago marymary

I love cucumbers on sandwiches, so will definitely try this. Thanks!

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5 months ago red135

One of the things I inherited from my ex husband - his "recipe" for an egg sandwich. Broken yolk, like this, but with some Louisiana hot sauce and emmenthaler or jarlsberg melted on top, on toasted (preferable egg) bun, with mayo and romaine. So delish.

Stringio

5 months ago Kenneth Mitchell

of course this is perfect food. and the mayo you have spot on. but dot ya like a little run in the yolk?

Stringio

5 months ago Amy Farland

toasted bagel, cheese and bacon. nix the mayo.

Chili_falcon

5 months ago gbatrucks

AGREED!

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5 months ago tammy deane

we used a glass to cut a round hole in the slice of bread, drop in a fresh egg and fry in butter. Yummmmmmm

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5 months ago Yancey Poole

Wrong mayo. Needs either Duke's or Blue Plate.

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4 months ago the totally not-foolish pucko

Kewpie. The finest mayo on the planet fyi.

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5 months ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

By the way, this is a wonderful way to eat eggs on weekdays, too! And thanks for, finally, giving some love to an egg other than the ubiquitous runny yolk, or poached, or softly scrambled one. I've adored the broken yolk egg my whole life, and have always felt like the odd-one-out for preferring my eggs done this way. I must mention however that I like them even better when fried a skillet in which I've just fried up some outstanding bacon, and poured off the fat, and then scraped up the little crispy bits. Heaven! ;o)

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5 months ago stephanie

Definitely just feels like an advertisement for Hellman's. Don't you have to disclose that sort of thing?

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5 months ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Ah, let's try to seek to understand before seeking to be understood here (one of Covey's rules - the best one, to my mind). Just because someone likes a particular product doesn't necessarily mean that he or she is endorsing it for money. Often times a particular brand does make a difference. I don't always agree with Mr. Ruhlman, or with anyone else who posts here, for that matter. But if an accomplished and respected cook recommends a particular brand, especially within the context of a recipe where the quality of that ingredient matters, I take it as helpful information (with which I may, or may not, ultimately agree) and move on. ;o)

Cleo-lea_2

5 months ago KellyinToronto

This is my egg sandwich! This is excactly what you get when you ask for one at a Hong Kong - style cafe. There's no butter- it's vegetable oil, and it comes on thickly sliced, crustless untoasted white. I usually ask for luncheon meat on mine. Paired with a Milk Tea- that's always the first thing I get after I land in Hong Kong, at the Honalulu Cafe. If I'm feeling home sick, and making this at home in Toronto - there's always a dab of ( Oh ! The horror!) Miracle Whip! ( My made it that way...)

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5 months ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

I’ve always made my fried eggs this way; as a young child, I thought that runny yolks – the options being “over easy” or “sunny side up” in our house – seemed so, well, "gross", to use the common vernacular. Yes, they do have a different taste. It’s easy to overcook them, however, so one must remain attentive.
I made one a broken yolk fried sandwich just last weekend. I put it on this bread, very thinly sliced:
http://food52.com/recipes... one slice smeared with a sharp, coarse (whole seed) mustard, along with a half dozen razor-thin slivers of good salume and a couple tablespoons of grated asiago. (The egg always goes on the slice not spread with mustard, to get the buttery egg taste into the bread.) I put the sandwich on a panini press until a crispy medium brown, then ate it out on my deck, slowly, in awe of how something so simple can be so satisfying, no matter how many times one makes it. But I agree, too, that the white bread + mayo + broken yolk fried egg sandwich is a wonderful treat. ;o) P.S. I'm looking forward to getting your new book! Would appreciate data that I could take to my cardiologist, who takes a rather dim view of my enthusiasm (love affair, really) with eggs.

Farmer's_market

5 months ago amysarah

Huge egg fan and I love a simple preparation (for instance, the French regard for a perfect poached egg as serious cuisine speaks to me far more than any frou-frou Foam de Blahblah) ...but I have to agree that this piece feels a bit precious. This is precisely the egg sandwich - 'technique' and all - I've made since pre-history. My kids ate one en route to school countless times. So, I don't know...maybe presenting it as a revelation feels a bit twee. (But it is a fine egg sandwich!)

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5 months ago gfincher

This has LONG been my favorite, quick fix sandwich. My variations are w/Duke's Mayo w/a bit of curry powder mixed in & maybe a slice of sharp cheddar over the egg as it is cooking. YUM!

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5 months ago ATG117

Is this a sponsored post by hellman's? That jar seems to perfectly placed.

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5 months ago Tashipluto

Umm, this is what every deli in NYC gives you if you order a fried egg sandwich with mayo on white. I love eggs every possible way, except this one. (Now the eggs with vinegar -- that's a great recipe!)

Dsc00731

5 months ago saragrad

Always had this for breakfast growing up. And this is how I fry eggs for my toddler son as I'm paranoid about feeding him runny yolks. We love our yolks cooked! I love how you guys make such a simple homey treat look so good.

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5 months ago Catherine

I will definitely be trying this. My long-standing favorite, however, is this gem: http://joannagoddard.blogspot...

Stringio

5 months ago Sietske van Schaik

I've eaten countless egg sandwiches like that for the past 20+ years. But then again, I suppose I have been ahead of the curve, drinking my beverages from empty jars.

I honestly had to double check that I was actually looking at a Food52 post, and not a sneakily placed ad.

Stringio

5 months ago Sietske van Schaik

And I totally replied to the wrong post. There go all my cool point. Man. ;-)

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5 months ago ariverisariver

Look, I love Ruhlman. But this is an illustrated recipe for putting a cooked egg on a piece of bread.

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5 months ago Marian Bull

Marian is Food52's Associate Editor.

Actually, we were all pretty excited by this recipe -- like he says in the text, it's a technique that lives somewhere between scrambling and frying, which I had never heard of before, and it tasted like no other egg sandwich I'd ever had, especially with the untoasted bread and the Hellman's. Seriously, give it a try.

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5 months ago sygyzy

I am a big Ruhlman and Food52 fan and I agree, this sandwich is probably really delicious (how can you go wrong with egg, butter, bread?). But let's be honest here, ariverisariver is right. This is a silly post that feels like filler. If you are going to have him come into your studio and do a segment, why not something like Charcuterie or what it was like to co-author certain iconic cookbooks?

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5 months ago Toledo KB

Because he's promoting his book, Egg. And this is about a simple technique.

Stringio

5 months ago Michael Ruhlman

Michael is a food critic and established cookbook author -- Ruhlman's Twenty and Egg: A Culinary Exploration are the most recent additions to his vast body of work.

I could have done a poached egg on whole wheat toast with salt and pepper. Also one of my favorite dishes? or still not enough ingredients for you? Seriously, I'm grateful for Marian's response, because it really is a form of the egg that is unique and rarely addressed.

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5 months ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

It amuses me sometimes to see posted on Food52 pieces on what to the editors seem to be novel, even break-through techniques, but which are actually commonly used and known. As shown just in the few comments posted so far, this may not be as rare as one might think. But no matter. We're all learning from one another. (It's interesting to see items like that, which seem so ordinary and common to me, and yet are revelations to others. Sometimes I wonder whether the fact that entire generations are growing up with parents who simply don't cook makes simple techniques such as this newsworthy.) Cheers. ;o)

Stringio

5 months ago Sietske van Schaik

I've eaten countless egg sandwiches like that for the past 20+ years. But then again, I suppose I have been ahead of the curve, drinking my beverages from empty jars.

I honestly had to double check that I was actually looking at a Food52 post, and not a sneakily placed ad.

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5 months ago alaparc

My favorite comfort food. Only I use ketchup.

Stringio

5 months ago Michael Ruhlman

Michael is a food critic and established cookbook author -- Ruhlman's Twenty and Egg: A Culinary Exploration are the most recent additions to his vast body of work.

ketchup? seriously? that sounds really gross. but can't knock it if i haven't tried it.

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5 months ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

My brother and now my son (a young adult) both put ketchup on fried egg sandwiches. It kind of turns my stomach but hey, à chacun son goût! ;o)

Stringio

5 months ago Jamie Avera

I know lots of people that put ketchup on their eggs. Ain't my thing, but its a thing, for sure.

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5 months ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

I totally "get" ketchup on anything, especially something that's inherently bland, like an egg on white bread. Ketchup is the quintessential "umami" ingredient (read Gladwell's New Yorker piece for more info). No wonder kids love ketchup so much. It's the most complex-tasting food many of them are served. ;o)