‘Honestly, it’s life changing’ is a regular series where we talk about the weird and wonderful possessions we can’t imagine life without. Think of it as an ode to the mundane, bizarre and, sometimes, wholly unnecessary products in our lives.
At some point last year, I found myself staring into the distance in my kitchen, wondering how many times I could listen to my housemate and his girlfriend argue about how to cook boiled eggs. “Move to London,” they said. “It’ll be fun,” they said.
The limit, it turned out, was three times. What can I say? My tolerance levels are low.
In a passive aggressive move, I decided to buy him a kitchen gadget that would fix the problem – and bring peace and quiet to our south London flat.
At this point, it’s probably worth noting that homeware stores are my nirvana. Stressed out? Walk around B&Q. Looking for something fun to do on Friday lunchtime? Robert Dyas. Pushing the boat out on a Sunday afternoon? Get a bus to heaven itself, aka The Range. The fact I find this therapeutic has given me near-encyclopedic knowledge of kitchen gadgets and cleaning products.
I knew exactly what to buy – and that it would be really cheap.
Enter the colour-change egg timer (Amazon, £1.80 and free delivery). It’s frustrating that it doesn’t have a catchier name (apologies to my editor for this) but whatever.
The timer is incredibly simple. Like soooo simple. Every time you’re boiling an egg or two, you just put it in the saucepan at the same time. The red circle will get smaller as they boil and the markers will indicate how cooked the eggs are; soft, medium or hard-boiled.
Googling how long to boil an egg for leads you to a lot of conflicting advice – but with this timer, you don’t even need to check a clock. Flick through a recipe book instead! Wash up a few plates! Claim those precious minutes back gurl, life is short!
Even if the water is bubbling away at quite some speed – making it a little tricky to read – it’s easy enough to scoop the timer out and check where your eggs are at.
Once I’d presented my housemate with the gift, it became a key component of our joint kitchen supplies, barely making contact with the cupboard as it lived a long and fulfilling life of constant use.
Sadly, my time living with him came to an end this year (we’re still pals, don’t worry). So when we moved out in May, I did what any egg-loving human would do – I stole the timer back.
After stealthily removing it from the kitchen (which wasn’t hard, as the timer is the size of an egg), I buried it in the bottom of my own boxes and refused to look back. I’m not in the habit of gifting people things and then taking them for myself, but sometimes needs must.