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Poach Pods by Fusionbrands
I love a good poached egg. You can't go wrong with one on a slice of buttered toast or as the accompaniment to any well-made meal. Unfortunately the little blighters are so difficult to get right causing me a great deal of frustration and heartache when I bodge it up. Surely I'm not the only one who marvels at those people who can crack an egg into a pan of hot water and lift out a perfectly formed poach egg a few minutes later.
I am aware that there are many supposed secrets to producing the perfect poached egg. I've heard it all; a dash of vinegar, a pinch of salt, a splash of lemon juice and stirring the water to form a whirlpool. These tips only serve to deplete my store of condiments and I think I would have as much success if I were to throw my own shoes into the pan alongside the egg.
For me, the perfect pan-poached egg is a mystery I have long since made peace with. I put it down as one of those mystical and impossible arts like licking your own elbow or neatly folding a fitted sheet.
However, there is a solution. I refer to the poach pods, which are to the inept egg poacher what an ocean liner is to a castaway.
[Against my better instincts I have refrained from littering this review with egg-related puns. So, this one aside, let's crack on.]
=== What are poach pods? ===
Simply put, a poach pod is a small silicone pouch for holding the egg together whilst it cooks in the pan. This solves the problem of the egg white dispersing throughout the pan and forming a mass of albumen webbing. You won't have to add any salt, vinegar or methylated spirits to your pan to get the egg to stay together. You simply crack the egg into the pod and place the pod into a small amount of simmering water in the pan. No water will come into contact with the egg and you will be presenting onto your plate a perfect poached egg in a matter of stress-free minutes.
The poach pods themselves measure 8cm in diameter by 7cm tall and come in two shades of green - one light and one dark. The rim of each pod is slightly wavy and not uniform all the way around. This is to make them easy to hold and move with your egg inside. There are also three small holes near the upper edges of each pod which I can only assume are to help you in lifting them in and out of the pan (using a fork prong for example).
=== How to use them ===
Firstly, you will need to coat the inside of each poach pod with a small amount of oil or butter. I use olive oil on mine which works brilliantly and is of course the healthier choice. I use mild olive oil so that less flavour contaminates the egg. I prefer my eggs to taste of egg not of oil or butter. You will also only need a very small amount of oil as it spreads well onto the surface of the pods and is easy to apply with either your finger or a pastry brush.
Next you simply crack an egg into each pod - obviously, being careful not to get any shell in with the egg. I use large sized eggs in the poach pods and there is still enough of a gap between the egg and the pod rim to prevent an overflowing situation. Medium or small eggs will also work just as well because of the domed design of the pods. Add salt or pepper to season if you like.
The next step is to add about an inch or so of water to a pan and bring it to a simmer. You will only need to add a little amount of water because the main cooking force behind the poach pods is steam (more on this soon). The poach pods do not need to float on the water and will sit nicely on the base of the pan. Be careful not to add too little that the pan dry boils before your eggs are done and not to add too much so that the simmering water splashes over the sides of the poach pods and into your eggs. You will find out the ideal amount necessary for your pan after a few practices.
It is important to select the correct size pan so that you can fit two poach pods in the pan if necessary. Both pods should sit happily alongside each other without squashing together.
To lower the poach pods into the pan once the water is simmering you can use whatever technique works best for you. I prefer to use my fingers but this way you have to be careful not to burn yourself on the pan or the water. You can use a slotted spoon if you have one handy or you can make use of the little holes on the top edges of the pods to lower them in using the prongs on a pair of forks. This is a little tricky though and liable to end in disaster if you are not careful. Alternatively, you can place the empty pods into the pan first and then crack the egg in then if you find this easier. There is no right way to do it but the wrong way is whatever way means that you spill the egg over the side and into the pan.
Next, and probably the most important step, is to place a pan lid over the pan whilst the cooking is taking place. This keeps the steam from the simmering water inside the pan and is essential to cook the top of the eggs in the poach pod. The heat from the water will cook the underside of the eggs through the silicone of the pods and the steam will cook the top part of your eggs. If you don't have a pan lid then a plate will also work but it is important to keep an eye on what is happening inside the pan. This is to make sure that the water is not bubbling up too violently and splashing your eggs. Turn the heat down if this is happening.
It is also important to keep an eye on the progress of the eggs. In my experience the eggs are done when the top of the egg is nice and white. This will vary depending on how well done you like your poach eggs though. I like mine to be runny and don't mind a bit of slimy egg white if it means I have a runny yolk to dip my soldiers into.
Again, the timing will come with practice. The top of the egg is always the last part to cook and when the egg white has started to turn from transparent to solid white the time to pounce is near. By following this rule of thumb I always get my eggs nice and runny and cooked all the way through. Leave them in a bit longer if you prefer a slightly hardening yolk.
Next is the slightly tricky part. When your eggs are done, it's time to switch off the heat and remove the pods. Again, any technique is acceptable. Again, I prefer to use my fingers (I don't have a great self-preservation instinct) and simply lift each pod out individually using both hands. You can use a slotted spoon to scoop up the pods but you may need to use a guiding finger to keep the pods level. The magician's act of using two forks through the holes on each side of the pod is also a viable technique.
When out of the pan you simply need to run a butter knife or a spoon around the edges between the egg and the pod to loosen it. Then turn the pod upside down over where you want your eggs on your plate i.e. over the toast. Simply push the base of the pod inwards to encourage the egg to fall out and voila! You should have a perfectly poached egg.
A small word of caution here - sometimes the egg white can stick to the poach pod if you have not applied enough oil before cracking the egg. This can leave you with a slightly uneven poach egg surface and at worse a two-part poached egg. Not ideal.
To avoid this, make sure you apply enough oil and that the poach pod surface is coasted thoroughly before cracking the egg into the pod. As I said earlier though, you don't need a great amount of oil but only need to make sure you spread it around well. This is where butter comes in useful since it will stick better to the silicone of the pods and is easy to see where you have missed. I don't like buttery eggs though and find oil works just as well if you do it thoroughly.
Although I appear to have described the instructions to assembling a car from scratch, the whole process from start to finish will not take much longer than a modest five minutes. You can save time by bringing your water to a simmer whilst you prepare the pods. My eggs take about 3-4 minutes to cook from the moment they are placed in the pan of simmering water.
=== Consistency of results ===
Because of the shape of the poach pods, the finished poach egg will look round and smooth. The inverted domed base of the pod means that when popped onto your plate, the egg will look like a small dome. There is a uniform layer of egg white above the yolk and when cut the yolk oozes out. I really like the look of the eggs these pods produce consistently. They look professional and although they may be a bit flatter than pan-cooked poached eggs they still look like the real deal.
As I say, the timing of your eggs comes with practice and you will quickly work out how long you need to leave the eggs to get your desired result. This will depend on your preference, pan type and hob type. For example, gas hobs here are best because they regulate the heat much better than electric hobs. Saying that though, I have used these on both hobs and they work equally well. It is just easier to prevent the water from bubbling up on a gas hob.
I have two poached eggs about once a week and have been using these poach pods for the best part of two years now. On the whole, my eggs turn out perfect every time but I sometimes get the occasional 'some assembly required' poached egg. This is because I have either failed to grease the pods thoroughly or have rushed and tried to force the eggs out of the pods without running a knife around the edges.
=== Washing ===
Washing the poach pods is really straightforward. I find that the best way to wash them is to flip them inside out and scrub them with a scrubbing brush or dish cloth. Because the pods are made from silicone they come clean very easily and will not require muscle-busting effort.
Often all that needs cleaning is the oily residue left over and some bits of cooked egg white stuck to the inside. Warm soapy water is all that's needed here. And because no egg was ever put directly into your saucepan, the pan will only need a quick rinse.
=== Verdict ===
If, like me, you are incapable of cooking a poached egg unaided in a pan of water then these are definitely for you. They take the pain and misery out of cooking poached eggs and provide reliable consistent results. No more failed attempts; you will be able to enjoy perfect poached eggs without subscribing to witchcraft and wizardry.
=== Price/Availability ===
These are currently available at Amazon for £4.54 and from Lakeland for £4.99. You will also find them in several big supermarket stores in the kitchenware aisle at a similar price.
Thanks for reading :)
I love poached eggs but rarely cook them as I always end up 'poaching' my saucepan too! Bits of the egg would get stuck on the bottom of the saucepan and they would be the very devil to remove.
At least that was how it used to be before hubby discovered the Poach Pod in a shop in York where he was working. The tag attached to the pod stated that it was 'a modern silicone egg cooking tool' and, since he loves poached eggs too he decided to try the pods.
Who makes Poach Pods?
Well the company is called Fusion Brands which is an American company and they produce a range of silicone baking aids.
How much are they?
They are sold in pairs and ours cost £4.99 for the two.
What do they look like?
They are basically little silicone dishes with three pointed wavy edges with a small holes at each rounded point. They are just the right size in which to fit an egg - no surprise there then! To give you an idea they sit comfortably in the palm of my hand. The ones that we have are green - one dark and one light green - I am not sure whether there are other colours available. They fit nicely inside one another for easy of storage and they are obviously heat resistant.
How do they work?
Well you just boil up the water in the saucepan as usual and reduce it to a simmer. Then you crack an egg into the pod having lightly oiled the pod first - Dave always sprays the pod with Fry Light and that seems to work well.
The Poach Pod then floats in the simmering water and you need to put the lid on the pan. You then just cook the egg for four to six minutes depending on your preference and then remove the whole thing for the pan using a slatted spoon.
To remove the egg from the pod you just run a spoon round the egg to loosen it, turn the silicone pod inside out and gently ease the egg out onto your plate.
Are they just for poached eggs?
According to the instructions they can be used for cooking batter, cakes or frittata. The mixture should be put into the pod, the pod supported during cooking and the recipe instructions followed.
You can also put things into the pod that need to be moulded into that shape. The pods are then chilled in the fridge and the contents removed once set.
We haven't tried any of these so can't comment on the effectiveness but I can't see there being any real problems.
What else do I need to know?
The Poach Pods are really easy to clean - just put them in the washing up bowl with hot soapy water and Bob's your uncle! The saucepan only needs rinsing out so the whole messy cleaning process is avoided.
They can also be washed in a dishwasher - you just pop them on the top shelf and secure them using one of the little holes around the top so that they stay in place whilst being washed.
Don't use any sharp implements or abrasive cleaning pads with these pods or you will rip the silicone.
Don't put the pods directly onto a heat source.
So what is the verdict?
Well I think they are worth every penny! The eggs cook properly and they taste lovely and it is great to be able to have poached eggs without having to mess about cleaning the saucepan afterwards.
Before we had the Poach Pods I often ended up having to boil some water with washing powder in it to get the mess off the base of the saucepan but not anymore!
Recommended by me? You bet they are!
Poached Eggs are renowned for being one of the hardest things to perfect and I like many others have struggled to perfect the poached egg over the years. Rarely have I managed to master the feat of a perfect poached egg, even with countless tips from Mum's, Granny's and Television Chefs alike.
Poached egg on toast happens to be my favourite way to each eggs. The poached egg is possible so satisfying to eat, not only for its runny round yoke but perhaps the sense of achievement that you have managed to crack it, pardon the pun, and actually have produced a poached egg and not some runny mess.
I finally got round to purchasing something to help assist me in my poaching quest and I picked a pair of these poach pods up from Debenhams for around £5. The poach pods are made from silicone and are very easy to use. I have had the pods for a couple of month now and I have found they are extremely easy to clean and produce a near perfect poached egg each time.
To poach an egg using the poach pod you start with the normal ritual of boiling a pan of water. You then crack your egg into the pod and pop the pod in the water, once boiling. The pod should then float in the water and your egg should begin to cook.
I have found once the egg has been cooking for a couple of minutes the pod eventually seems to sink. I'm not entirely sure if this is supposed to happen or not. However, it does seem to finish off the poaching process nicely and the egg remains within the pod once you fish it out of the water.
Once cooked, I have found that the egg pops out of the pod very easily and you are left with a nicely shaped, if not a bit small at times (possibly more down to the eggs I buy) poached egg. The eggs are more than presentable if you were serving them too guests.
I find that the pods are very easy to clean after use and having used my pods on 7 or 8 occasions, they look brand new. I would recommend these to anyone who struggles with perfecting the poached egg. However, the feeling of satisfaction when you have poached them unassisted can't be matched!
After reading many excellent reviews on Poachpods, I was keen to get my hands on a set. These cute looking green silicone pods promise to cook perfect poached eggs every time - and I love poached eggs!
My local Sainsbury's put temptation in my way with a hanging display of Poachpods which I could just quickly pull off the column as I passed. They cost me £5 and I found it very easy to amalgamate them into my weekly shop without too much guilt.
~~Who makes them? ~~
The Poachpod is created by Fusionbrands; an American company that produces silicone kitchen gadgets such as the Fingertong and the Foodpod. Each of these gadgets look incredibly clever and useful on the website, and I am going to look out for them in the future.
Fusionbrands also sells the Poachpod lift, a shaped spoon-like tool for safely lifting the Poachpod out of the boiling water.
~~What do they look like? ~~
The pack includes two Poachpods; one a dark green and one a light green which fit neatly inside each other for storage. They are soft silicone cups, with a wavy edge which rises in three places at the lip, having a diameter of 7cm and a depth of 6cm. The depth of these pods means that one egg will be well below the level of the lip, sitting easily low down in the pod. Each of these three raised lips has a hole, for storage and dishwashing. They are fairly large but can be cupped easily in the palm.
They are tough (heat-resistant to 357ºC) and they are microwave and dishwasher safe
~~How do I use them? ~~
To avoid the pod tipping over, they should be used with in shallow boiling water, with a lid that can be place on top of the pan to speed up the cooking process. Carefully crack the eggs and tip them into the oiled Poachpod, being careful not to tip the pod over. Then lower the pod into the boiling water. I found that this was a fairly tricky manoeuvre. I had to turn the heat right down to avoid being burnt by the steam and splashes of boiling water. Lowering the pod into the water is a bit scary and it is difficult not to panic an drop the pod. The technique can be acquired after a few uses, but I did scald myself a few times and also allowed water to enter the pod due to not putting it down levelly.
The instructions tell me to cover the pan and boil for 4 to 6 minutes. I left my eggs for 6 minutes as I like them fairly firm.
Removing the pods from the water without letting water inside is just as difficult as placing them in the water. There is a choice of two techniques; the fast dive - grabbing the raised edges firmly and quickly with both hands; or the fork fiddle - trying to hook the prongs of two forks into the holes of the raised edges and removing the pod.
Neither method is ideal. I have also tried using a large spoon for both putting the pod into the water and taking it out, but this is better for placing the pod than removing it, as you collect a large amount of boiling water in the spoon as you remove the pod, which is then deposited over your other food.
~~What are the results? ~~
Once the pods are removed from the water, the eggs can easily be slipped out and onto a plate. The results are fantastic! Perfectly formed little flying saucers, soft and golden in the middle with beautifully cooked whites all around. Symmetrical and perfect, they make all the scalding worthwhile.
~~How do I clean them? ~~
I find that there is no egg residue left on the pods if I oil them properly before use. I do this by dripping a tiny drop of sunflower oil inside, and sweeping it around the pod with a finger.
I initially tried putting my Poachpods in the dishwasher. As they are fairly light, they can be swept away by the water unless I attach them securely, so I use two of the holes in the side and hook them over the longer prongs for safety. I recommend that you put them on the top shelf of the dishwasher, as they do become detached from the prongs and I have found them resting on the bottom of the dishwasher. Although this has not damaged them, I have found that resting on the heating element stains them, leaving a brown mark on the plastic that cannot be removed.
I prefer to handwash them after use. Handwashing is a very quick process, as the pods are never dirty. It is only necessary to wash away the oil residue but they take a little while to dry and I usually have to pat them dry with a tea towel. I find that handwashing gives a better result.
~~What else can they be used for? ~~
The obvious use for these two silicone pods is to march around the house, shoving them up your jumper and pretending that they are breast implants - which the whole family did as soon as I bought them home. My two sons also invented an interesting game, whereby they pushed the pod down on the work surface and took bets as to which one would pop back up first.
More sensibly, these pods can be used for cooking flan, frittata, cakes or other baked goods. I have not felt any temptation to cook a frittata or flan, but if I did, the instructions are exactly the same as for poached eggs; fill the oiled pod with favourite batter and cook as directed.
I imagine that these instructions are designed at non-Brits, but I would be interested to hear if anybody has successfully cooked a frittata in the pod.
This is a fantastic idea and a great design. The Poachpods themselves are a simple but good quality product which make absolutely perfect poached eggs. The results are far better than the old fashioned metal egg poachers that I have used in the past, and much neater and more attractive than just dumping an egg into boiling water.
The difficulties I experience with putting them into the water and getting them out could easily be remedied by buying the special tool, and I may well invest in this one day.
We are developing our cooking skills, we try to make fresh food every night, making rather than using pre-made dinners. We try where possible to make best use of what we buy and use leftovers for soups, stews and snacks and started buying Good Food, Delicious and Olive magazines for monthly recipe ideas and things to do with food.
The reason I mention this is because Olive magazine was our inspiration for buying the Poachpad egg poacher. We saw this in the magazine and both felt this might help us actually perfect the poached egg, rather than making one successful poached egg in every three.
This is a luxury buy really, you can always poach an egg with patience, time and a bit of skill, this takes a lot of that out of the equation and lets you worry less about the egg allowing you to take more time over other ingredients.
I have to admit when the product first arrived I feared the worst, no box, simply a cellophane wrapper with two limp green bits of plastic, but appearance can be deceptive and these have been a mainstay of our kitchen for the past year and have proven to be incredibly useful and easy to use, we've bought these for family as gifts and would recommend them to anyone.
The poachpads are a lime green colour, they are made of silicone, so are very rubbery and stretchy to the touch, they can be placed inside each other and folded meaning storage space isn't a huge problem. Washing them up involves gently heating them in boiling water and gently rubbing off any residue from the egg or water, I think if you washed these up too vigorously they would rip fairly easily.
The product is about 8cm in diameter and looks like a plastic lily pad, the idea being that you place the pouch in boiling water, it floats like a lily pad and you crack your egg into it. The pouch is microwave and dish washer safe and is happy to float in boiling water without damage or risk.
We bought our set of two from Amazon for £4.99 about 12 months ago, we use them probably once every two to three weeks and they have proven to be a great buy, there has been no wear and tear and I think they have been marvellous value for under a fiver, I anticipate with good care these should last at least another two years and we will then replace them as they are a great time and labour saving device. Just as a tip, for best results, once you've put your eggs in the poach pads, cover your pan with a lid and leave the eggs to cook, this gets better results for me.
So how to poach an egg with these little suckers?
Boil your water, and then place one of the poach pads or both in the boiling water with the scooped end facing upwards, don't push it underwater allow it to float on the surface, then crack an egg into the poach pad, now leave it to poach in the boiling water and then remove the poach pad with a sieve or something similar. We find the whole process incredibly easy and it avoids the risk of the egg separating in the water, it's a cheat in many ways, but it saves us time and makes great poached eggs.
Suggestions for eating with your lovely, easy to make poached eggs.
For me I love poached eggs on a toasted smoked salmon bagel, or alternatively if you can whip up a quick hollandaise sauce and boil some asparagus, the eggs are perfect with this combination also, by having the comfort of being able to leave the eggs and not worry about them separating, you really can gain confidence to make the foods you combine with them more exciting.
I had seen these Poachpods in Lakeland catalogues numerous times, but was always put off buying them by my mum - she insisted that poaching eggs was easy, and that I didn't need one. Despite her many attempts to teach me though, I could never manage to get it right. My poached eggs always separated badly in the pan, and about half the white separated in thin strands. So eventually I gave up and bought myself a pack of two Poachpods, for around £5.
The Poachpods are flexible silicone moulds into which you crack your raw egg, and then float in a pan of boiling water. Mine are yellow rather than the green here. You get a small instruction leaflet with the pods, which advises you to lightly oil the inside before putting your egg in.
Using the Poachpods is very easy. I dab a small amount of oil around the inside, pour in the raw egg, and then gently place it into the pan and turn the heat down to simmering - it's a good idea to use a spoon to lower the pod into the water so you don't get splashed and so it doesn't bob around worryingly looking like it might capsize. Once the eggs are done you can lift the pods out of the pan (again with a spoon), run the spoon around the edge of the egg to loosen it from the pod, and then gently pop the egg out by turning the pod upside down.
These Poachpods have revolutionalised my egg-eating. No longer do I have a fried egg roll for breakfast at weekends because poaching it is too much hassle - now I can poach eggs perfectly with ease. I find the the Poachpods really easy and strees free to use, and it is easy to get your eggs cooked just as you like them.
One very important point is to use a lid on the pan. I ignored this part of the instruction the first time I used the pods, and the top of the egg just was not cooking. I have glass lids on my pans which means I can watch the egg through the lid, and I can see when all the white is properly cooked but the yolk is still runny - my idea of eggy perfection.
Another point to note is that the eggs come out more compact that they might if you were simply poaching them in water - they are very neat round eggs, and so if you're having poached egg on toast, you might find you want two to fill your slice of toast rather than one.
The Poachpods are also very easy to wash. I find that there is very little egg residue left on them, so they don't need lots of hard scrubbing. They are dishwasher safe, and I usually put them in the dishwasher to clean them - the pods have handy little holes on the top edge which are designed to hook onto the dishwasher plate racks so they don't float around when the dishwasher is on.
I'm delighted with my Poachpods, and would recommend them to anyone who, like me, has had problems poaching eggs. I only wish I'd bought them when I first saw them and not let me mum tell me I didn't need them - clearly, mothers don't always know best!
One of the simple teas or lunches that I enjoy is poached eggs on toast. Now my trusty poaching pan is great if we all want eggs as it can cook 4 at a time but occasionally as it's just me I wanted something to use that meant I could cook only one or two eggs. I thought these poach pods would be ideal but for me they haven't really been as good as my ancient poached egg pan.
These are available from Lakeland, John Lewis and Sainsbury's to my knowledge and come in packs of two pods for around £5.
What are they?
The pods themselves are made from silicone and are green or yellow in colour. The pods have a curved base and a come up in to a half sphere type of shape with three points as the Dooyoo picture shows. In each of these points is a small hole. These holes are there for you to put a dishwasher rack prong through if you wish to wash them in a dishwasher. As we don't have one I can't comment if the holes survived this treatment very long before breaking.
Preparing the pod and cooking your egg
To cook an egg with these pods you first need to oil the pod. I fluctuate how I do this if I am feeling lazy I place a drop in the pod and then squish it around the pod by compressing the sides of the pod together. If I am not bothered by the washing up I use a pastry brush to brush the oil around the pod. I do have to admit though the brush method does work better at reducing the amount of the egg left sticking to the pod.
Once your pod is oiled you just crack the egg into the pod and then place this in about an inch and a half of water that is gently simmering. Now the first few times I did this I failed miserably and ended up with damp soggy eggs as the water was boiling too fast and water ended up inside the pod which then left the egg a soggy messy. Equally I have found that it is best to either use a large spoon or a ladle to lower the egg into the water as sometimes if you hold the silicone pod too hard when lowering it into the water then the egg either leaks out or water leaks in again resulting in disappointing eggs. It is also important to make sure what ever pan you are cooking the eggs in has a lid, as if the lid isn't on the pan then it not only takes longer for the eggs to cook in the pod. Often in my experience if the pan lid is not on then it leads to the yolk becoming tough and not runny. I think the reason for this is that in a lot of ways the eggs are cooked by a mixture of steaming and poaching them.
Getting your eggs out
There is no easy way to get the pods out of the pan unless you invest in a poach pod lift which is a glorified ladle without a bottom. I have tried burning my fingers as I lift them out and can only really say using the a normal soup ladle or a slotted spoon is the best way to lift them out but often the pods can slip into the water. This is also where you find out if you have greased them enough, you are advised to gently run a spoon around the edge of the egg then to turn it over and uncurl the pod to push the egg out. I have to admit varying success with this and often I am left with a rim of egg white all the top of the pod no matter how much I grease the pod and I don't like to use to much oil as it leaves a nasty film across the egg which seems to spoil the taste a bit.
Cleaning the pod
I have always cleaned this in normal washing up liquid you are advised to not use any abrasive cleaners or pads on it but in my experience I have found that a cloth and or a soft sponge gets the egg residue off without any problems.
Other uses of your pod
The manufacture claims you can use these pods for baking things in to create little domes, I haven't tried this yet but I have concerns about how well this would work out as I would imagine you would need to tightly fit them into a baking tray or dish as they topple over very easily on a work top let alone when you are moving them into the oven.. They also suggest that you can use them for jelly models I tried this but found that the jelly just stuck to the model and didn't come out in a nice dome shape at all. The also claim you can use it for shaped desserts like mousses but after my jelly disaster I have been reluctant to try this. If you like moulding food such as rice into pretty shapes it can also been used for that but as I have had no cheesy dinner parties to do this for again it is something I don't' plan on using it for.
I have had mixed results with these pods and wouldn't want to totally claim they are useless as the times they have worked for me the eggs have been beautifully cooked. But overall for me the times I have got it wrong out weight the times I have got it right due to the need to get the greasing right, having to make sure the water does boil into the pods or that they don't topple over as you lift and lower them into the pan. I have to say they are more hassle than they are worth and I have gone back to using my trusty poaching pan as the small amount of butter in these moulds always works to stop them sticking and I never have any trouble with water getting in to them and getting damp soggy eggs. Overall I wouldn't recommend these and would advise saving up to buy an egg poaching pan instead.
I'm a definite poached egg fan bu tI'm terrible at making them. All that swirling the water, pouring it in carefully etc has never worked for me and I just get a mush of egg, with half the white in thin strands in the pan. I literally had to stop trying, only having poached eggs when I could persuade my boyfriend to make me one.
That was, until.. THE POACHPOD!
These were from Lakeland and they cost £4.99 for two and came in either a green set, or a yellow set. I got the green ones on a whim and they are brill! They were available with the "poachpod lift" a lifting device but I thought I could probably do the job with just a spoon.
The poachpods are silicone and they look like the picture on here. The little holes at the extremities are to put over the spikes in your dishwasher so that they don't float around. I thought this was ingenious and obviously it means these are dishwasher safe.
To make a poached egg you simply grease the poachpod (I've tried with butter and with a spray of oil - both work fine) and crank your egg into it and put it into a sauté (I use a saucepan!) pan with a lid and full of hot (simmering) water so that it floats in the water. The instructions say they need 6 minutes but I've found that after about 4 they are done. You can tell when they are getting cooked because the appearance of the egg changes.
When they're done you simply fish the mould out of the pan (I use a slotted spoon) and flip it upside down onto your plate/other food and the perfectly domed perfectly poached egg drops out.
All of the eggs I've made using these have been brill and overnight guests have even complimented me on them!
I know there are alternatives for poaching eggs but these are so neat and easy to use, and importantly for me, easy to store that I really recommend them if you are bad poacher like I used to be!
They also say that you can use them for baking things like flans and they can be used as jelly/other food moulds.
I have never in my life poached an egg before my partner decided it would be a good idea to add these poach pods to our ever going collection of kitchen utensils and accessories. The first time we saw them was on a shopping trip to Dunelm Mill, priced at £3.99. I convinced my partner at that time that they were simply something we didn't need, after all, when did either of us ever express an interest in a poached egg, but a couple of weeks later he decided that they were too good to pass up, and maybe poached eggs would become a regular eating experience for us. Alas the poach pods sat gathering dust for about 5 weeks before I decided it was time to use them.
***What is a poach pod***
The poach pod is another addition to the flexible silicon cookware family, which allows you to poach an egg by floating the silicon tray, which acts as a little basket for your egg, in boiling water, but not only can you poach eggs with this pod but you can bake mini flans, fritattas, cakes or other baked goods with it, so it is a multi purpose kitchen accessory. You can also use the pod as mould for the likes of chilled mousses and such like. The poach pod is heat resistant up to a temperature of 357 degrees celcius and is both microwave and dishwasher safe.
***How to use the poach pod***
The instructions for using the pod are really simple, all you have to do is lightly grease the silicone tray and crack your egg into it - we used butter to grease ours but of course you can use oil if you prefer. You need to fill a pan up with about 1 and a half inches of water, and once your water is simmering gently place the tray or trays into thepan, cover with a lid and let them sit for about 4-6 minutes until your egg reaches the desired firmness. I like my eggs runny, no matter whether fried or boiled and the same goes for poached, so the first time I used these pods I let the eggs cook for about 4 and a half minutes.
I am a curious one when it comes to using new tools in the kitchen so watched my eggs slowly poach, the egg cooking from the outside in until the whole egg was white. I'm pleased to say that the tray floated without much disturbance on the top of the water so there's no need to be concerned about the stability of the tray. Obviously removing the pods from the water is the trickiest bit as you can't simply just stick your hand in the water to remove so I used a ladel to scoop mine out.
The one thing I noticed after I'd scooped the pod out of the water, was the collection of water that had gathered on top of my egg, probably caused by the condensation from the lid dropping into the top of the pod, but this was easily tipped out. Now I have had 2 different experiences with the poach pods, one where the egg slid out easily without any coaxing and the other where the egg had stuck to the pod and a knife needed to be run around the edge to loosen it. The instructions do state that to remove the egg from the poach pod you should run a spoon around the egg edge then flip the pod inside out, gently pushing the egg out, so I wasn't surprised that my egg was stuck to the pod.
Be careful when flipping the pod inside out as the bottom does tend to get very hot due to the boiling water, and it is easy to burn your fingers so just be mindful of that if using these pods...this is probably the only design flaw in this product, but the eggs I have to say turned out perfectly and I am now a huge fan of poached eggs, and will have them over a fried egg any day. They are healthier and just as quick and easy if not quicker and easier to make than a fried egg.
***Do I recommend***
If like me, you have shyed away from poaching eggs because you've heard the stories about how complicated it can be to get the perfect poached egg, then this product is highly recommended. I had never had a poached egg before I started using these pods and I didn't realise what I was missing out on. You are pretty much gauranteed to get the perfect poached egg every single time using the pod, and it's is incredibly easy to use. For an intital outlay of £3.99 I think this product is great value for money and will definately be a keeper among my kitchen accessories.
We weren't in Dunelm Mills to buy any kitchen equipment but after seeing these on a display rack my other half decided they were a must have! I've seen these Poach pods before but just thought they were another thing to find storage for in the kitchen which is becoming rather difficult. I know you're probably thinking how can I not have storage for something so small? Well I'm sure I'll find it a space but over the years my partner and I have accumulated silly things like microwave potato bakers and that sort of stuff and now they just take up room (and dust!).
Before I could have a discussion with him about them he was at the till with his wallet out! Oh well, maybe he'll make me breakfast more often! Priced at £3.99 for two pods it's not going to break the bank if they end up in the bin so I just rolled my eyes at him and waited on the other side of the cashier.
The next day I got home from the school run and after the madness of a school morning suddenly realised I'd forgotten to eat breakfast. As I only had the youngest child about I put some cartoons on and headed into the kitchen. Normally I would have some cereal or porridge but the Poach Pods caught my eye and I thought why not make myself a big breakfast.
Normally I can't poach an egg to save my life so we'll have to wait and see how this goes; I may end up with cereal after all!
I put about an inch of water into a pot and started it on the road to boiling. The next instruction was to evenly oil the poach pod. How exactly they wanted me to do that I wasn't sure so I got the cooking spray and used that instead. Two squirts coated the pod nicely. I cracked a large egg into the pod. My biggest fear was that this pod wouldn't stand on its own and would tip over spilling the egg everywhere but thankfully I was wrong and the pod held up well.
By now the water in the pot is boiling so I turned it down to a simmer and placed the pod in the middle. I couldn't find the matching pot lid so I grabbed one a size too big and positioned it on top of the pot and set the timer. The instructions said to cook for 4-6 minutes. I like my eggs runny but not overly runny.
The egg was in to cook for 5 minutes and then sat there in the hot water for an extra minute waiting for me to butter my toast. The instructions tell you to get the pod out with a slotted spoon but I just grabbed the edges and pulled it out myself. The edges sit above the water level quite a bit so not that dangerous! I ran a toothpick along the edge to free the egg from the pod and the turned it upside down over my piece of toast. The egg came out easily and looked really good.
Time to eat! Using my knife a sliced the egg in half to find it was almost perfect! Ever so slightly over cooked for my liking but I'll just take off some cooking time in future. It was really nice to have a cooked breakfast on a week day.
The pod cleans very easily too which is always a bonus.
There are other uses for these pods according to the leaflet like flans and cakes but I have a perfect use for them coming up. My step-mother used to make cake Easter eggs with me when I was little and the shape of the poached egg is perfect for this so come Easter I'm going to uses these poaching pods to make cake eggs for decoration. Heat resistant up to 675 Fahrenheit they'll do fine in the oven.
Microwave, freezer and dishwasher safe. FDA approved and non-stick.
© oioiyou 2011
Like many people, I struggle to achieve the perfect poached egg. Boiling them tends to leave them watery and stringy whilst microwaving them tends to results in the egg being cooked more in some parts than others. So, determined to start eating eggs more healthily than fried or scrambled the poach pod seemed the perfect solution. In theory, you just crack an egg into the silicone mould, pop it in boiling water where it floats and you get a perfect poached egg...
What a great idea - if it worked that is. I am normally a great fan on Lakeland products and think in general they offer nifty solutions to little cooking problems. But on this occasion the solution is dismal. Yes, the pod floats and the whole thing looks promising to begin with. But after 7 or 8 minutes I was staring into the saucepan still waiting for the white to fully cook whilst the outer edges of the egg were completely solid. After 10 minutes I gave up and scooped the egg out of the pod to find the yolk completely solid and the white on the top of the egg still disgustingly snotty. Yuck.
No alterations or experimenting with water levels, temperature or timing has yet resulted in a better result and I am completely disappointed by a product that looked so promising to begin with.
All in all, a waste of £5 and a lot of eggs!
If you like anything that resembles a poached egg then DO NOT buy this product.
This morning I decided to dig out the Lakeland silicone poach pods I had purchased a good year ago now. The pods have been gathering dust at the back of a cupboard after many failed attempts in poaching my eggs. Every time I tried using the poach pods, the end result was unsuccessful, no matter which way I try it. I would use different timings, different quantities of water, varied simmering rates and even different pan styles. None of these factors have worked for my egg.
The pod principle
The pods are made of silicone material and are designed to float in boiling water with the cracked egg resting inside. The boiling water is to then cook the egg in the pod. Lightly oiling the pod will then allow the poached egg to slip out onto your plate with ease. Lakeland sell the product at £4:99 in stores, online and via mail order. It is claimed that these are a top seller. I have read many mixed reviews on the product and some people even say to submerge the egg in to water to get the top of the egg to cook!
The ghost egg
I bought these pods because making poached eggs in a pan of boiling water can sometimes not work in that the white floats away from the yolk and there is pretty much nothing left worth eating. Also I find it very difficult to clean the pan afterwards due to the hot water hardening the egg even more. A very frustrating and wasteful experience to say the least. I thought this product would be a solution to my problem but it wasn't.
A raw deal
The main problems I find are that either the whole of the egg is set including the yolk or more disgustingly, some of the white in the middle is still wobbly and raw. Erghh!!! This totally puts me off breakfast all together. The white ends up texturally like rubber on the outside and even when the yolk is set, still there are raw bits throughout the egg. I have now thrown out the poach pods because for me they simply do not work.
If all else fails
It is claimed that the poach pods can be used in the oven for baking and also as jelly moulds. Personally, I am not going to bother.
If anyone has any suggestions on achieving the perfect poached egg (white set, yolk runny) then please could you tell me because I am determined not to be BEATEN!
I adore poached eggs - which would be all well and good if I had any knack for cooking them , but I simply don't . I've tried just dropping the eggs into boiling water, or stirring the water first and then dropping them in, and even adding a little vinegar . Either way, I seem to end up with all the white swirling about like crazy, and just a yolk and lots of stringy whites at the end .
It was my daughter that spotted these bright green things in Lakeland, and pointed them out . At £5 a pair, they were not too expensive, and I decided to give them a bash to see if I couldget some good poached eggs going at home . Eessentially, they are moulded silicone cups, in a bright Kermit green . They are a few millimetres thick, and have holes punched in the edges, which I assume are to allow these to float. Using them is pretty simple .
You just ring water to the boil in a pan, and then turn down to a simmer. Meanwhile, rub a little butter or oil on the inside of the poach pods, and break an egg into each. Don't worry, they are well designed and won't tip over covering your kitchen in egg white . Carefully and slowly lower the pods into the simmering water, and cook for 4-6 minutes depending on egg size and how well cooked you want them, and use a slotted spoon to remove from the pan. Now, the packaging recommends loosening the egg from the pod with a spoon - but personally, I think there is no need- the silicone is flexible, and you can release the egg as though you were popping a pill from a blister pack .
So, I guess you want to know the results ? Well, the packaging wasn't too specific on timings, and not knowing how long it took to get a perfect poached egg, I did have a couple with slightly snotty whites, and a couple with completely set yolks .After a little trial and error though, I did manage to get the eggs the way I wanted - with a completely set white but a runny yolk, and realised this took just under 5 minutes. The eggs themselves come out in a very uniform shape that looks tidy on the plate, a kind of squat dome .
The silicone itself is very easy to wash in the sink, and after many uses shows no signs at all of any stress or wear, and I think my £5 was money well spent to have my eggs the way I like them!
Would I recommend these ? Well, yes, I would . However, Asda have an almost identical product on sale at the moment (you'll find it on the egg aisle) for just £2, which I have also purchased and tried ( My daughter likes poached eggs, and I eat more then one, so the extras were needed) and which performs just as well .
So, I'm going to take of one star, purely in light of the fact that there are identical products sold elsewhere for less .If you're determined to have this version however, then just pop into Lakeland
* Les oeufs sont savoureux/Eggs are tasty*
Like Marmite, you either love or hate poached eggs. For me, there are few treats tastier than a large, fresh egg cracked into a pan of gently swirling hot water with a little vinegar. Served on a slice of toast with a pinch of sea salt, a good poached egg is every inch the adult equivalent of egg with toast soldiers.
* Je n'aime pas les cuiseurs électriques/I do not like electric cookers*
When my girlfriend and I moved into our new flat, we were dismayed to see that our landlady had replaced a serviceable gas hob with an electric cooker - apparently for 'safety reasons'. Electric hobs are the poor cousin of the gas hob in the eyes of anyone I've ever met who loves to cook and we were somewhat gutted that we'd effectively have to learn to cook again. Electric hobs are unwieldy beasts, it's very hard to regulate temperature and try as I might, I can never get them fully clean. Before we discovered Poach pods we'd given up on poached eggs, as egg after egg disintegrated into white strands of albumenous gunk.
* Pochez les oeufs/Poach the eggs*
Poach pods - truly silicone superstars - don't really seem up to much on first inspection. Rounded, loosely dome shaped moulds of green silicone, they appeared somewhat uninspired when my girlfriend brought them home from Lakeland (roughly £5 for a pair at time of writing). They are roughly three inches in diameter, relatively thin and feature small holes punched into the extremities (not entirely sure what these are for).
The method for using them is simple:
1.Bring about an inch of water to the boil in a pan
2.Reduce to a simmer
3.Lightly oil the poach pods
4.Crack an egg into each pod
5.Gently place in the simmering water for 4-6 minutes (depending on egg size)
6.Remove from the water with a slotted spoon
7.Loosen the edge of the egg with a teaspoon
8.Pop out of the mould and serve
*Les oeufs sont-ils bons?/Are the eggs good?*
Technically speaking, calling these poach pods is something of a misnomer, as the eggs don't sit in the water. In fact, the cooking method is a combination of poaching, boiling and steaming and the effects are impressive. Although results can vary a little based on the size and freshness of your egg, it is possible to create the full spectrum of poached eggs (from barely set to set but with a runny yolk to firmly set).
I can't complain about these in any way, although the regular shaped eggs you turn out may seem a little artificial compared to those made in the traditional way.
Poach pods aren't particularly expensive, incredibly easy to use, offer consistent results, are very easy to clean and are virtually indestructible. I've no way of testing it, but silicone can withstand temperatures of close to 400 degrees Celsius and these can be used in a microwave to boot.
They are an excellent, idiot proof way to produce safely cooked and aesthetically pleasing poached eggs time after time. If you like poached eggs but can't quite master the technique, I thoroughly recommend picking up a pair of these, leaving you free to focus your culinary energies elsewhere.
*Excusez la traduction/Excuse the translation*
*All translations provided by Babelfish for purely comic reasons - I have very little French...
The poachpod is a flexible silicone cooking tool for poaching eggs, baking and moulding. The poachpodTM allows you to float and poach an egg in boiling water like a lily pad on a pond. When the egg is ready, flip the nonstick pod inside out and gently push the perfectly domed shaped egg out.