Many people start their day on an egg but cooking one perfectly can be surprisingly tricky.

Now a leading chef has revealed how you can make yourself the perfect eggs every time by sharing the common mistakes many amateur cooks fall foul of in the kitchen.

From gorgeously runny poached eggs to buttery scrambled eggs, Shay Cooper, head chef at The Goring Hotel in London, will tell you how to whip up your favourite dishes so that you never overcook an egg or burst a yolk again.

POACHED EGGS

1. Always use fresh eggs

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Shay told Good Housekeeping that using fresh eggs is very important if you want to perfectly poach them. He said: "As eggs age, the white becomes looser.

"This means that once added to the water they will be more prone to separating."

2. Don't use too much white wine vinegar

Many people add white wine vinegar when poaching eggs as they believe it holds the whites together and helps them cook faster.

But Shay advises to only use it in small quantities as it can make the whites too firm and take the yolk longer to cook, resulting in an unevenly cooked egg.

3. Don't crack eggs straight into the pan

Shay says it's crucial that you crack eggs into a bowl or ramekin first and then place them in the pan.

This helps remove some of the looser, less fresh whites that can result in your poached egg separating.

4. Don't add eggs to boiling water

Don't bring your water to an intense boil, according to Shay, as the bubbling water could break up the whites.

Instead, use simmering water, which will ensure your egg is cooked more gently and that you have more control over the cooking of it.

SCRAMBLED EGGS

1. Don't add too much liquid

If you like adding cream or milk to your eggs, Shay warns not to add too much.

"Otherwise the yolk and white will end up separating along with the liquids," he warns.

2. Whisk eggs in a bowl first

Shay says it's crucial to give eggs a good whisk in a bowl first before putting them in the pan.

Make sure the eggs are an even colour before adding them to a saucepan.

He said: "You're trapping air into the mixture which will result in light, fluffy scrambled eggs.

"And you should ideally use a large bowl. This will give you more room to work with and it's easier to whisk using a circular motion that pulls the egg close to the surface."

3. Take them off the heat before they've finished cooking

Scrambled eggs can become overcooked in an instant, as they keep cooking in a hot pan even after you've taken it off the heat.

Shay advises to take your eggs off the heat just before you think they are ready and you should have the perfect scrambled eggs.

BOILED EGGS

1. Get the cooking times right

Shay says these are the ultimate cooking times for the perfect boiled eggs. He recommends three minutes for soft-cooked eggs with runny yolks, four minutes for yolks with a slightly firmer but still semi-runny centre, and seven minutes for a hard-boiled egg with a firm centre.

These timings are for medium eggs. If using a large egg, add on an extra minute's cooking time, and for extra-large, add on two minutes.

2. Don't use fresh eggs for hard-boils

Fresh eggs are much harder to peel if you use them for your hard-boiled breakfast, so Shay recommends using ones that are near their use-by date.