Why It's Basically Impossible To Cook An Egg On The Sidewalk

Alfresco dining is a gift like no other — even if it's just for the benefit of being removed from a stuffy room packed with tearful children and an overwhelming aroma of garlic (perhaps the two could be related?). Whether there's music and moonlight or love and romance, outside dining provides a much more luxurious and tranquil feeling.

Of course, some forms of eating outside are more sophisticated than others. Lounging in five-star comfort doesn't quite have the same effect as jumping around with a flock of pigeons, picking crumbs off the floor.

Let's not forget what is probably the most unsophisticated outdoor eating experience of them all (yet the thing many people are most weirdly obsessed with): trying to cook an egg on a sidewalk. Social media is awash with speculation that eggs can actually be fried on a hot sidewalk (via YouTube), but how probable is it that this basic form of cooking can realistically be done?

Social media claims that frying eggs on a sidewalk is achievable, but scientists are skeptical

According to Smithsonian Magazine, a hugely significant event takes place on July 4 every year: National Fry an Egg on the Sidewalk Day, obviously. Although it is considered to be possible to fry an egg on the sidewalk, it's highly unlikely to be a success.

It is suggested that sidewalks need to be heated to a whopping 158 degrees F to produce a thoroughly fried egg, but they rarely reach such a temperature (via Southern Living). The Library of Congress notes that cracking the egg cools the sidewalk down, suggesting that a constant heat source from below would be required to cook it properly.

Researchers who have investigated the theory of frying eggs on sidewalks have concluded that it is more likely to be successful on darker surfaces like asphalt than lighter surfaces (such as concrete). The experts also agree that cooking an egg in a pan on a sidewalk provides a far greater chance of being a culinary wonderment (via Smithsonian Magazine). Plus, does anyone really want to eat an egg that's been slopping around on a chewing gum-laden sidewalk?