Exxon Valdez of liquid sick’

Gadgets

Prepare yourself for ovular awfulness as we test every egg-themed culinary tool we can find. You’ll never look a chicken in the eye again

In my time reviewing kitchen gadgets, I’ve learned it would not be good to be reborn as a chicken, because of the sickest, most disturbing contraptions always, always have something to do with eggs. Pressure cubers, poaching baggies, vertically extruding grills: they are a twisted universe unto themselves.

So, in a vaguely Easter-themed special, I have decided to test every one of these damned gadgets I can get my hands on. Strap in – I’m looking for the worst, the most unspeakable. If you are already suspicious of eggs, be warned: the following may – nay, will definitely – contain triggers.

Yolk Fish egg separator
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Yolk Fish: only a little bit weird.
First up, separators. Yolk Fish from Prezzybox (£8.95), a fat-bellied silicone fish that uses light suction to hoover up yolks, is effective and only moderately weird. There’s EZCracker (£3.97, Amazon), which sounds more like a racist slur than a kitchen aid. It’s a handheld cradle suspended over razorblades – when activated, the device’s arms push the shell down, on to the blades, and apart. Like a lethal reverse Wonderbra. (I achieved successful shell splitting 20% of the time. The separator attachment fell off and landed in the bowl 100% of the time.)

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EZCracker egg separator
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EZCracker: ‘like a lethal reverse Wonderbra.’
Then there’s Bogey Man (£6.99, findmeagift.co.uk), a clear winner. Imagine a Toby Jug, if Toby were suffering from the plague. When you break a raw egg into his head and tip it up, albumen seeps from his nostrils like snot. It’s goddamn disgusting. Egg-wrong rating: 3/5.

 

VonShef egg cooker
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VonShef: for all those times you need to cook 16 eggs quite slowly. The next few experiments involve hardboiled eggs, so I crank up the VonShef steamer (£13.99, domu.co.uk), which lets you cook 16 at a time. Sixteen! Who needs 16 eggs at a time, outside of the army or an IVF facility? This isn’t Cool Hand Luke. They cook fine but take 18 minutes. Also, the stacked trays resemble an incubator, which makes me feel sad. Mmm, sad eggs. I try out Egg Slicer Wedger Piercer (£1.38, Amazon), which sounds like a person with a column in Tatler. Sadly, it does all the things for which it’s inelegantly named, so it’s useless for my purposes. You can even use it on mushrooms.

 

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The Eggstractor, though. It’s a concertina tube atop a tripod, which claims to peel eggs instantly. The idea is that when one pushes down on it, the pressure inside the egg’s air cell causes it to jettison its shell, like Nina Simone shrugging off a fur, and slip through a hole in the tripod base, naked and ready. It’s surprisingly violent, like performing CPR. When I finally succeed, the egg slams into the counter, the yolk shooting across the room. It’s like punching someone in the face so hard their eyeball explodes. “The Magic of the patented Eggstractor is Pure Science!” reads the box. Luckily I speak a little bozo, so let me translate: “It’s bullshit!” (Bullshit to the value of £17.20 – thanks, Amazon.) Egg-wrong rating: 3/5.

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Watch Rhik wrangle with the surprisingly violent Eggstractor.
Lakeland’s Boiled Egg Topper (£9.97) is the unexpected catch of the day. It’s a Dalek’s eye that beheads boiled eggs with ruthless ease. Pop it on an off, draw up the spring-mounted topper, and it cracks back satisfyingly, neatly scoring the shell along its perimeter so the top can be levered off. No more bread soldiers are getting cold while I pick at boiled eggshell, the breakfast equivalent of finding the end of the sticky tape. Using this again. Egg-wrong rating: 0/5.

 

Okashina Tamago Mawashite flan maker
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The Okashina Tamago Mawashite flan maker
I turn to the $46 Okashina Tamago Mawashite Purin Egg Flan Maker (japantrendshop.com). The instructions are slightly clearer, being entirely in Japanese, and I find a video online in which a chorus of singing eggs show me what to do. Like Dora, the aim is to spin an egg, scrambling its insides and turning it golden. When gently cooked in the shell, it will turn to pain, a crème caramel dessert popular in Japan. Yeah, right. It’s a Kinder toy. I place an egg into a plastic chamber and pump a crank back and forth, spinning it dizzy. It’s like subjecting a tiny astronaut to centrifugal training. Following the video, I boil a pan of water. “Stop the fire and enter the egg plastic-wrapped,” the singing eggs tells me. Is this a plea for safe sex? Why plastic-wrapped? (Why any of this, I suppose.) I comply. After 30 seconds – as instructed – I take it out and leave it to cool. I have a bad feeling.

Okashina Tamago Mawashite flan maker
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… and the neon liquid it produced.
I’m ready for my pain. Caramel sauce standing by, spoon poised, I crack the egg. A neon puddle seeps out, covering the counter and dripping on to my shoes. It’s horrendous, an Exxon Valdez of smooth, liquid sick, a split colostomy bag. On the plus side, it’s a shade of yellow I’ve never seen before. A masterpiece of egg-wrong: 5/5.

I did later figure out the DoraQ sling, and can now whip up golden eggs to order. But the damage is done. It has been a shattering experience that has left me shell-shocked. I never want to see one again. My flat stinks to high heaven. I’ve learned to watch my back next time I’m on a farm, for the things we do to eggs are an insult to hens that will echo through the ages. The horror. The horror.