Monday, June 27, 2011

Boiling Eggs

I have learned that the eggs you purchase in the store are often in storage before being sent to the stores or restaurants for our consumption.   There is no telling how long they may sit in a store warehouse or on the shelf before they make it to your table. Although the USDA has requirements, how closely are they actually followed?

I found this information on BackYardChickens Forum:
"Egg cartons are stamped with the day they are packed, and a Sell By date.  The day packed is typically a julian date, 045 would be the 45th day of the year.  The Sell By date is typically 30 days from that and is in month-day format, e.g., FEB 16.  The cartons are stamped with a plant code, P-0155 or WI-005 would be examples, P codes are USDA inspected plants, two letter codes are state inspected plants.  If they are processed in a state inspected plant, they typically stay in that state.  Most plants are USDA inspected though.  How old they are before they are packed varies and there is no way to tell.  If they are bought and sold between companies they are stored on bulk pallets and would be processed at the receiving end to be placed in the buying companies own packaging, although the USDA recommends that happen within five days."

For years I didn't care for eggs. I didn't care for the taste to them and they always seemed a little like rubber to me. I can remember enjoying hard boiled eggs my grandma used to make.  I have memories of sitting in her wooden high chair eating warm hard boiled eggs covered in butter.  I didn't put it together until recently that the eggs she always fixed were fresh.  She always had chickens when we were younger, and until getting my own, could not understand her love of chickens.  I do now!

I have always boiled eggs the same way. I learned how to boil eggs while taking home economics in high school. Do they still teach home economics?  I always used store bought eggs for cooking and boiling.  As I mentioned, I didn't care for them, so to me eggs were basically for cooking.  If boiled, they always peeled without problems.

Since having fresh eggs, peeling hard boiled eggs has become tedious.  The shell does not come off well, and especially the eggs from "Red".  Her eggs would not peel without taking a layer or two of the egg off with it. After doing some research I found that as eggs age, a gas is produced that allows the egg to actually separate from the shell.  There becomes a space.  This is why store bought eggs always peeled so well for me.  They were old enough to allow for a gas to produce space.

I read on a blog last week (if I could find the link I would post it) a fool proof method for boiling even the freshest eggs.  Many people have their own methods that are similar I'm sure.  I tried this method to make some deviled eggs.  It was amazing.  The eggs peeled so easy, I couldn't believe it.

  Directions for easy to peel boiled eggs.

Bring a pan of water to a rolling boil.  Lower the eggs into the boiling water.  I used a spaghetti stirrer.  
Boil for 14 minutes. 

Rolling Boil
Place eggs into an ice water bath until cold. 

I repeated this step twice.  Once the ice was melted from the first bath I drained the water and added more ice and water.
Ice Water Bath
Once the eggs were really cold I peeled them. 

Peeled Eggs

No comments:

Post a Comment