Spring has sprung, which means it's time for eggs. Colored eggs are used to celebrate spring in general, as well as the Christian observance of Easter or the Persian new year, Nowruz. And a hard-boiled egg is one of the items on a seder plate at Passover dinner.
In pursuit of the perfect spring egg, I tested several different methods for hard cooking -- not hard boiling -- eggs, all of which had fans swearing up and down that theirs was the best and most foolproof method for easy-to-peel shells and yellow yolks. Common to all was that eggs should not be boiled; overlong heating produces an unpleasant gray line around the yoke and a strong smell. Instead, eggs should be put in a pan, covered with one inch of cold water, brought just to a boil over high heat, then removed from heat and covered. How long they remain covered, and what happens next, differ widely among methods, though.