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Boston Chefs Reveal Their Favorite Way to Prepare an Egg

From poached to purgatory, Boston chefs describe their favorite ways to prepare eggs for breakfast and brunch dishes. This is the first installment of the Breakfast Week Q&A series.

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Andy Husbands

Andy Husbands (square)

"Fried with sea salt and smoked pepper, served on Vermont maple grits." —Andy Husbands, chef/owner of The Smoke Shop (coming soon), Tremont 647, and Sister Sorel

Image credit: Provided

Erica Keefe

Erica Keefe (square)

"Poached." —Erica Keefe, executive chef of Five Horses Tavern (South End)

Image credit: Provided

Mike Wyatt

Mike Wyatt (square)

"Poached or over easy. The runny yolk is 100% necessary." —Mike Wyatt, general manager and beverage director of Ward 8

Image credit: Provided

Ines Santos

Ines Santos (larger square)

"In the spring, I like poached eggs, served with spinach and fava beans that have been sautéed with garlic and olive oil. Lots of country bread on the side. In the winter, I like fried eggs until the whites are crispy but the yolks are runny, in an English muffin with bacon." —Ines Santos, general manager of The Salty Pig

Image credit: Provided

Jason Santos

Jason Santos (square)

"Sunny side up with cracked black pepper and fresh snipped chives." —Jason Santos, chef/owner of Abby Lane and Back Bay Harry's

Image credit: Provided

Joshua Smith

Joshua Smith (square)

"Slow-cooked, over easy, no color with in-house special lipid (variety of bacon, pork, and beef fat) in non-stick pan. French-style." —Joshua Smith, chef/owner of Moody's Delicatessen and The Backroom

Image credit: Provided

Christine and Carla Pallotta

Carla and Christine Pallotta (square)

"Fried in olive oil. Served on top of Nebo's grilled, house-made rustic bread." —Christine Pallotta, chef/owner of Nebo Cucina & Enoteca



"Eggs in Purgatory: Eggs poached in spicy tomato sauce, topped with pecorino romano cheese, served over creamy polenta." —Carla Pallotta, chef/owner of Nebo Cucina & Enoteca

Image credit: Christine (left) and Carla Pallotta/Provided

Diana Kudajarova

Diana Kudajarova (square)

"I like my eggs either as a custard (a really good, slow scramble is basically a custard, and no sane restaurant will ever make it because it takes 15 minutes of stirring a pan, on very low heat, with a chopstick) or a sauce (anything with a runny yolk). When I make eggs at home and want something quick, I make them over easy with soy sauce." —Diana Kudajarova, chef/co-owner of Journeyman, BackbarAmes Street Deli, and Study

Image credit: Provided

Sam Treadway

Sam Treadway (square)

"If I’m cooking eggs for myself, then I’m going to do a fried egg over easy and then probably slide it on top of a grilled cheese sandwich." —Sam Treadway, co-owner and bar manager of JourneymanBackbarAmes Street Deli, and Study

Image credit: Provided

Ben Weisberger

Ben Weisberger (square)

"Poached is the only way to eat an egg — I love cutting into a perfectly poached egg and watching the golden-yellow yolk spill out over the rest of my dish." —Ben Weisberger, chef de cuisine of No. 9 Park

Image credit: Wayne Chinnock Photography

Matt Drummond

Matt Drummond

"My favorite way (which may sound a little cliché) is to cook an egg sunny side up, or a very soft, fluffy scrambled. I’m not a huge fan of chicken eggs, but you can definitely make me happy with a nice, rich duck egg instead." —Matt Drummond, executive chef of Loco Taqueria & Oyster Bar

Image credit: Provided

Robert Tobin

Robert Tobin (square)

"Scrambled eggs." —Robert Tobin, chef of Aura and TAMO Bistro & Bar at the Seaport Hotel

Image credit: Provided

Brian Poe

Brian Poe

"Always with champagne or a beer in hand and a double side of coffee." —Brian Poe, chef/owner of Bukowski Tavern (Cambridge), Poe's Kitchen at the Rattlesnake, and The Tip Tap Room

Image credit: Michael Piazza

Patrick Gilmartin

Patrick Gilmartin (square)

"I like to serve eggs sunny side up on dishes because they look the best and have the ooziest yolks. For myself in the mornings, I usually scramble them because that's the easiest way to eat eggs with one hand and a baby in the other." —Patrick Gilmartin, executive chef of River Bar

Image credit: Brian Samuels

Shayne Nunes

Shayne Nunes

"Depending on the application it's being used for, the preparation of an egg may vary for that particular dish. For instance, on my burgers, I love a sunny side egg, but on my pork belly benedict, obviously poached is the way to go. With that said, over medium is definitely my personal favorite for most applications; the white is cooked all the way, and the yolk still runs beautifully." —Shayne Nunes, executive chef of Foundry on Elm and Saloon

Image credit: Provided

David Verdo

David Verdo

"Poached." —David Verdo, executive chef of Outlook Kitchen and Bar

Image credit: Official Site

Mary Ting Hyatt

Mary Ting Hyatt

"Favorite way to prepare an egg for a breakfast sandwich — over medium. For a bagel sandwich especially, the over medium is perfect. No scrambled squishing out both sides. You get the pleasures of a fried egg that's still lusciously translucent, without yolk running onto your shirt." —Mary Ting Hyatt, baker/owner of Bagelsaurus

Image credit: Chloe Nolan

Marga Raffucci

Marga Raffucci (square)

"Pan fried in a good amount of olive oil, sunny side up. No sense in eating an egg if it doesn't have a runny yolk, as far as I'm concerned." —Marga Raffucci, executive chef of Sorellina

Image credit: Provided

Mitchell Randall

Mitchell Randall (square)

"Poached. Works so well in so many applications, from cool variations on eggs Benedict to seasonal pasta dishes." —Mitchell Randall, executive chef of Ostra

Image credit: Provided

Jason Maynard

Jason Maynard (square)

"My favorite way to prepare an egg is sunny side up." —Jason Maynard, executive chef of Mistral

Image credit: Provided

Angela Lamb

Angela Lamb (square)

"I love over easy eggs to dip my toast in." —Angela Lamb, general manager at Coda

Image credit: Provided

Olivier Senoussaoui

Olivier Senoussaoui

"Sunny side up." —Olivier Senoussaoui, executive chef of Precinct Kitchen + Bar

Image credit: Provided

Kevin Murphy

Kevin Murphy (square)

"Omelette Arnold Bennett." —Kevin Murphy, general manager of Parsnip Restaurant & Lounge

Image credit: Provided

Josh Turka

Josh Turka (square)

"My absolute favorite is steamed eggs; you can get them at Buvette in NYC. Basically you whisk eggs as if you’re going to scramble them, then use the steam wand on an espresso machine to cook them. The eggs come out perfectly cooked, tender, creamy, incredibly light, and fluffy. Serve them on top of some good toast, with good olive oil and some black pepper. Can’t be beat." —Josh Turka, executive chef of The Salty Pig

Image credit: Provided

Amanda McLaughlin

Amanda McLaughlin (square)

"Scrambled with CHEESE." —Amanda McLaughlin, general manager of Tico

Image credit: Provided

Joshua Brooks

Joshua Brooks (square)

"When it comes to cooking eggs for breakfast, I'm always torn between a beautiful poached egg or a barely cooked over easy. I'm all about the runny yolk." —Joshua Brooks, chef de cuisine at Catalyst

Image credit: Provided

Avi Shemtov

Avi Shetov (square)

"I love sunny side up eggs a little under next to a pile of pancakes. Maple syrup and egg yolk is one of my two or three favorite flavor combos in the world." —Avi Shemtov, owner and executive chef of The Chubby Chickpea

Image credit: Provided

Kyle Crusius

Kyle Crusius

"Steak and eggs are the best way to start any day, and nothing says 'today is gonna be a good day' like runny poached eggs and rare sirloin." —Kyle Crusius, chef de cuisine at The Chubby Chickpea

Image credit: Provided

Molly Hanson

Molly Hanson

"Eggs en cocotte. I make them with tarragon, butter, a tiny splash of cream, freshly ground pepper, and Maldon salt. I usually serve them with toast and bacon. I had them at Balthazar in NYC years ago and worked out my own recipe." —Molly Hanson, executive pastry chef at Grill 23 & Bar and Post 390

Image credit: Provided

Jay Murray

Jay Murray

"We just made shirred eggs with bacon and a gorgonzola sauce that I think knocked it out of the park. The steak on the side wasn’t bad either." —Jay Murray, executive chef of Grill 23 & Bar

Image credit: Provided

Nick Deutmeyer

Nick Deutmeyer

"My favorite way to cook eggs is sunny side up! I think any time you get a runny yolk, you are in business. I like to say that a warm egg yolk is 'nature’s most perfect sauce,' and when you combine it with the crispy edges of a fried egg, you can’t go wrong." —Nick Deutmeyer, chef de cuisine at Post 390

Image credit: Provided

Howard Haywood

Howard Haywood

"Softly scrambled. I attended the Culinary Institute of America. One of the most stressful practicals (cooking tests) was a French omelette and scrambled eggs. Properly cooked scrambled eggs take a lot more technique than people realize. Soft heavenly curds, salt, and pepper go a long way. I think in the near future chefs will be making scrambled eggs for appetizers. Scrambled eggs, caviar, chives, and toast points — doesn't get any better than that!" —Howard Haywood, executive chef of Olde Magoun's Saloon

Image credit: Provided

Greg Reeves

Greg Reeves (square)

"My favorite way to prepare eggs is very simple — fried egg, sunny side up. A warm runny egg yolk is like nature's mayonnaise. Sop it up with some greens, toast or potatoes." —Greg Reeves, chef/co-owner of Viale

Image credit: Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

Jonathan Kopacz

Jonathan Kopacz (square)

"There's nothing like a perfectly poached egg." —Jonathan Kopacz, executive chef of Brass Union

Image credit: Provided

Jeff Williams

Jeff Williams (square)

"To me there is nothing better than a medium fried egg — where the yolk still runs a little, but the edges are slight crispy." —Jeff Williams, executive chef of Chopps American Bar and Grill

Image credit: Provided

Dante de Magistris

Dante de Magistris (square)

"My favorite way to prepare an egg is by making a quick spicy tomato sauce and letting the eggs poach in that. My favorite is with fresh diced tomatoes. And this used to be a brunch dish at Dante called Eggs in Purgatory." —Dante de Magistris, chef/owner of Restaurant DanteIl Casale Cucina Italiana, and Il Casale Cucina Campana

Image credit: Provided

Daniel Bojorquez

Daniel Bojorquez (square)

"Sunny side up fried eggs are my favorite —gotta have a runny egg yolk." —Daniel Bojorquez, chef/owner of La Brasa

Image credit: Provided

Brian Rae

Brian Rae (square)

"I like to fry eggs in different flavored oils. Eggs fried in Sriracha oil are my thing right now. I've been eating them at home all week. Going to put one on the menu soon." —Brian Rae, executive chef of Centre Street Cafe

Image credit: Provided

Stephen Marcaurelle

Stephen Marcaurelle (square)

"My favorite way to prepare an egg is poached because it creates a naturally beautiful pocket for the yolk to wait. Circulated eggs for brunch are crap; it's just someone being lazy. Everyone knows poached eggs are better for every brunch application. I'm a 'two eggs over easy, bacon, home fries, wheat toast' kinda guy; I prefer it every time." —Stephen Marcaurelle, executive chef of Tres Gatos

Image credit: Provided

Patrick Campbell

Patrick Campbell (square)

"Eggs are probably the most versatile ingredient I could think of, so picking a favorite dish is next to impossible, especially when you consider sides, mix-ins, and toppings. But if I had to choose something to stand alone or almost alone, it would be a warm bowl of soft scrambled eggs." —Patrick Campbell, executive chef of Cafe ArtScience

Image credit: Wayne Chinnock

Michael Scelfo

Michael Scelfo (square)

"The best eggs I make are slow-scrambled on a double boiler with lots of comte. But that's only when I'm making eggs for my daughter, Mae, because it's her favorite." —Michael Scelfo, chef/owner of Alden & Harlow

Image credit: Hugh Galdones

Rachel Klein

Rachel Klein (square)

"My favorite egg dish is definitely shakshuka." —Rachel Klein, chef/owner of RFK Kitchen (coming soon)

Image credit: Provided

Francis Santos

Francis Santos (square)

"Plain and simple: farm-fresh local eggs sunny side up, cooked in olive oil with a little fresh ground pepper and kosher salt." —Francis Santos, executive chef of Ester

Image credit: Provided

Adrienne Mosier

Adrienne Wright (square)

"Poached eggs are the ideal egg for brunch, in my opinion. They have the full runny yolk effect of an over easy egg but take a little extra effort and love, making them a much more luxurious option." —Adrienne Mosier, chef de cuisine at Deuxave

Image credit: Provided

Robert Fathman

Robert Fathman

"Over medium on squishy white bread toast, American cheese, and Sriracha." —Robert Fathman, executive chef of Osteria Posto

Image credit: Provided

Joe Cassinelli

Joe Cassinelli - square

"I like soft scrambled eggs with cheddar cheese on sourdough toast. It's simple but delicious." —Joe Cassinelli, chef/owner of Alpine Restaurant Group (PostoOsteria PostoPainted BurroRosebud)

Image credit: Provided

Joe Carli

Joe Carli - square

"I love an olive oil fried egg with a little sea salt, crushed red pepper, and fresh oregano. Nice crispy edges but still a runny yolk — that and a piece of toast is all you need." —Joe Carli, chef at Posto

Image credit: Provided

State Park Team

State Park team

"Sunny side up — quintessential breakfast egg, beautiful, and you don't have to flip it!" —Leah Nadel, Tyler Sundet, and Alon Munzer, respectively chef de cuisine, chef/partner, and partner of State Park

Image credit: Leah Nadel, Tyler Sundet, and Alon Munzer/Provided

Matthew Barre

Matthew Barre

"I really love to poach eggs. There’s just something so cool about how it comes together. So many factors that can make it go wrong, yet in the end it’s really easy. I love the different textures, from the soft jelly-like white to the warm runny yolk. It’s one of those preparations that people rarely ever cook for themselves at home, so we always want to get it just perfect for them so that they really enjoy their breakfast." —Matthew Barre, executive chef of The Tap Trailhouse

Image credit: Provided

Joseph Ellia

Joseph Ellia

"My favorite way to prepare an egg, if it is for myself or my son, would be a good ole scrambled egg with a little cheese on top and cooked with a good amount of butter, because you can never go wrong with too much butter. My favorite way to cook an egg when I am cooking for someone else would be poached. I love the look that the egg has when you cut into the soft yolk and it oozes out from the white of the egg. So any time I get to make an order of egg Benedicts I have no problem whipping up an order." —Joseph Ellia, sous chef at Bear in Boots Gastropub

Image credit: Provided

Daniel Bruce

Daniel Bruce

My favorite (and my family’s favorite) egg dish is my cream cheese, scallion, and tomato eggs ("eggies" as my kids would call it). This was a go-to in the Bruce household on busy mornings. The recipe is in my cookbook, Simply New England: Seasonal Recipes That Celebrate Land and Sea, but I have included it here as well — enjoy!

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 6 extra-large eggs, beaten
  • 1 vine-ripened tomato, cut into quarters and sliced
  • 1 scallion, washed and chopped
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  1. In a large sauté pan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  2. When the butter bubbles, add the cream cheese and beaten eggs.
  3. Lower the heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggs begin to set, about 2 or 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, scallions, salt, and pepper and cook for another 4 minutes or until the eggs are soft and fluffy. Serve immediately. (Serves 4)
Daniel Bruce, Boston Harbor Hotel chef (Meritage Restaurant & Wine Bar, Rowes Wharf Bar, and Rowes Wharf Sea Grille)

Image credit: Provided

Justin Shoults

Justin Shoults

"My favorite way to prepare eggs is a five-minute boiled egg. The white is completely set, but the yolk is nice and runny." —Justin Shoults, executive chef of BRINE

Image credit: Provided

Matt Foley

Matt Foley

"I would say either a perfect sunny egg or a simple omelette; both take a little skill to do perfectly." —Matt Foley, executive chef of The Merchant

Image credit: Provided

Mark Sapienza

Mark Sapienza

"My favorite way to eat an egg is poached, just plain and simple. My favorite way to prepare eggs is when they are part of a perfect omelette. When you are moving up the ranks as a chef, one of the tests of your skill and technique is whether you can make an omelette, so I feel a lot of pride and satisfaction when I prepare a perfect soft-rolled omelette." —Mark Sapienza, executive chef of The Langham, Boston

Image credit: Provided

Greg Jordan

Greg Jordan

"I like an egg sunny side up with a runny yolk." —Greg Jordan, executive chef of The Quarry

Image credit: Provided

Ashley Santos

Ashley Santos

"Very soft scramble with lots of butter, lots of cheese, and chives." —Ashley Santos, sous chef at Trade

Image credit: Greg Stokinger

Nick Calias

Nick Calias

"I am a simple guy; I love my eggs over easy — the perfect texture of whites with the creamy yolk." —Nick Calias, executive chef of Brasserie Jo

Image credit: Provided

Jeremy Sewall

Jeremy Sewall

"My go-to egg preparation is always poached with a runny yolk." —Jeremy Sewall, chef/partner of LineageIsland Creek Oyster Bar, and Row 34

Image credit: Provided

Matt Jennings

Matt Jennings

"Poached eggs are the only way to go. Need that runny yolk!" —Matt Jennings, chef/owner of Townsman

Image credit: Provided

Salvatore Boscarino

Salvatore Boscarino

"My Sicilian pops would always grab some fresh greens from the garden in the morning, throw in some chopped potatoes, fry them up with up with olive oil, and beat some eggs, making the most amazing tasting fresh frittata. I learned his methods as a kid, and to this day it’s my favorite way to prepare eggs." —Salvatore Boscarino, co-owner of Pier 6

Image credit: Provided

Chris Robins

Chris Robins

"Fried in butter, over medium, salt and pepper." —Chris Robins, culinary director and managing partner of the Aquitaine Group

Image credit: Provided

Carla Gomes

Carla Gomes

"Over easy." —Carla Gomes, owner of Terramia, Antico Forno, and Cobblestone

Image credit: Provided

Izzy Berdan

Izzy berdan

"Butter, soft scramble, cheese, salt and pepper." —Izzy Berdan, creative director of the Aquitaine Group

Image credit: Provided

Adam Garcia

Adam Garcia

"Poached, eggs Benedict, salmon, and baby arugula." —Adam Garcia, general manager at Cinquecento

Image credit: Provided

Emily Ackerman

Emily Ackerman

"Poached eggs that are flash-fried are personally my favorite. Yes, it's extravagant, but isn't that what brunch should be about?" —Emily Ackerman, general manager of Aquitaine (Boston)

Image credit: Provided

Gregory Torrech

Gregory Torrech

"I love poached eggs." —Gregory Torrech, executive chef of The Beehive

Image credit: Provided

Marja Ferreira

Marja Ferreira

"Poached medium." —Marja Ferreira, beverage manager at Brew Cafe in District Hall

Image credit: Provided (Marja is in the center.)

Josh Lewin and Katrina Jazayeri

Josh Lewin and Katrina Jazayeri

"Carefully, as an omelette filled with more eggs. We like to make the softest, most buttery scrambled eggs you've ever had, add a small handful of chopped herbs, then stuff them inside an omelette. Caviar is a nice touch, definitely not required." —Josh Lewin, co-owner of Juliet

I love to make soft boiled eggs, served in their shells and scooped out with a spoon, or thin strip of toast, and sprinkled with salt and pepper and maybe some orange marmalade." —Katrina Jazayeri, co-owner of Juliet

Image credit: Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

Tony Maws

Tony Maws

"Properly cooked sunny side up egg." —Tony Maws, chef/owner of Craigie on Main and The Kirkland Tap & Trotter

Image credit: Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

Tom Borgia

Tom Borgia

"There is no bad way to prepare an egg. The best thing about it is its versatility. I definitely prefer not to scramble them. The yolk should be intact, runny, and not cold when it reaches the guest. It can be tricky at first, which is why all cooks should work a busy egg station early in their career. You will learn quickly what the effect of heat is upon food because eggs are so delicate." —Tom Borgia, executive chef of State Street Provisions

Image credit: Provided

Daniel Myers

Daniel Myers

"I typically find myself preparing more than one egg at a time. For breakfast, my wife and I will usually crack four to five eggs into a skillet, then fry them sunny side up, with all of the yolks combining to make one big egg with four to five yolks, melting cheese over the whites." —Daniel Myers, co-owner of Loyal Nine

Image credit: Provided

Josh Clark

"Over easy because it can be sopped up with the toast!" —Josh Clark, chef de cuisine of Aquitaine (Dedham)

Servio Garcia

"Sunny side up." —Servio Garcia, general manager of Bergamot and Bisq


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