There are few things more American than an egg breakfast at a diner, but that might not be the case forever. The egg is not just for breakfast anymore in the United States.
In celebration of World Egg Day, we’re taking a closer look at the changing role of the egg in American cuisine.
Chef and television personality Andrew Zimmern told Business Insider the unique properties of the egg are are the reason it became so popular as a breakfast food. They are plentiful, easy to prepare, and healthy.
But more recently, eggs have become a presence at meals other than breakfast. “Eggs are in the dinnertime spotlight for the modern American gastronaut,” said Zimmern.
He credited the trend, in part, to craft meat enthusiasts, the rise of the “gourmet lumberjack,” and an explosion in the popularity of Southern cooking, all of which “have put a fried egg essentially on top of everything.” Zimmern said the surge in the egg’s started about five years ago.
“I have always said that you can be a chef your entire life and still not make a sauce as naturally delicious as the yolk,” Saad said. “It is the richness and complex flavour of the yolk that adds the perfect finish to almost any dish. Add a fried egg to a BLT, and you take a classic American sandwich to a whole new level.”
Zimmern said ramen noodles, one of the hottest food crazes in America right now, are frequently served with a half-cooked Ontama egg floating in the broth. He also recalled eating another non-traditional egg dish, a “divine” kimchi porridge with a 1,000-year-old egg (an egg cured in clay) at a San Gabriel Valley restaurant with his crew.
He said five years ago, most people wouldn’t try or enjoy a 1,000-year-old egg. Today, that isn’t the case.
“Everyone in my group was really into it and I sort of gauge things by them because they are a good cross section of America; they all have different backgrounds,” Zimmern said.
These days, egg-loving foodies in New York can find a poached egg atop ramen noodles at Momofuku, brussels sprouts and pasta topped with egg at Telepan, and a spaghetti carbonara made with egg and guanciale at Maialino.
Wherever the egg is headed, we hope to keep seeing it on menus outside the “breakfast” section.
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