A new week and a new TOW. This week I’ve put together some information about eggs for you.
Thanks to their two ingredients protein and lecithin (a emulsifier), eggs are a panacea in the kitchen. Eggs can:
- lighten – If air is whipped into egg, egg white or yolk, it will increase their volume.
- bind – Heat (180 ° F max) leads to coagulation of the proteins which in turn binds.
- emulsify – The lecithin in the yolk combines fat and water. Two substances that usually repel each other.
- dye – Yolk dyes doughs, custards and the like yellow.
- glue – Whole egg, egg white and egg yolk are used variously for gluing different kinds of food.
- clarify – Slightly heated liquids can be clarified by adding egg white to it. Suspended solids are trapped and can be skimmed off the surface as a foam.
As this impressive list already shows, eggs are omnipresent. In many dishes, they are an important ingredient and each type of preparation will do them justice:
- raw – mayonnaise, tiramisu, eggnog, …
- fried – omelette, fried egg, frittata…
- boiled – poached, zabaione, Deviled Eggs, …
- baked – souffle, meringue, cake, …
EGG IN DETAIL
Those little wonders look rather inconspicuous at first glance. Their oval shape shows a white, green or brown shell (if you want to know which the color the shells of the eggs will have, look at the hens’ ears). Inside you’ll find the transparent egg white, which is surrounded by two membrans. The powerhouse of the egg, the yolk is wonderfully yellow to orange thanks to carotene.
BUY AND STORE
If you have the opportunity, buy your eggs locally, for example on the farmers’ market or directly at a farm. If you don’t have the time to do so make sure that your eggs are organic or free range. You’ll find the information on the box.
Have you found the perfect eggs, take them home and store them in their box in the fridge. The cardboard protects the eggs from odors, which can evaporate through the shell. Eggs are good for about 28 days from the date of laying. During this time they change:
- 3 days after the laying date – the eggs have not yet reached their full aroma (minimum ripening time) and are unsuitable for cooking (it will be hard to peel them, as egg white and yolk are still very firm)
- 4 to 10 days after the laying date – now the eggs have the best taste, best preparation: raw*, poached, fried egg, …
- 11 to 28 days after the laying date – the eggs continue to taste good, best preparation: cook and bake
* Information without guarantee and on responsibility of the individual.
If your box disappeared magically and you need to know if those eggs in your fridge are still edible, perform the swimming test. Fill a glass with water and carefully put the egg into it. If it sinks to the bottom of the glass and lies there, it is fresh, as the air cell between the two membrans is still small. The older the egg, the bigger the cell becomes (the egg loses water through the shell over time). So, if your egg is floating, it’s likely to be bad.
There are so many ways to use eggs and therefore it is one of the most important ingredients in the kitchen when handled properly. My favorite preparation is and remains the simple but classic fried egg with its typical white mirror and the yellow hemisphere in the middle. This tastes especially good with the eggs we get in our CSA share from Lacewing Farms every week. They’re fresher than fresh, so there is no need for the swimming test. Do you guys have a preferred egg dish?