The Incredible Edible Egg

30.09.2016 |

Episode #7 of the course Cooking essentials: how to start cooking at home by Jenna Edwards

 

Yesterday I threw in the idea that an egg could repurpose leftovers into a new meal. You have endless options, because eggs can take on a wide variety of functions and forms.

Scrambled into fried rice. Poached over your favorite brunch dish. Hard-boiled. Mollet (medium-boiled). Soft-boiled. Deviled. Baked. Fried. Omelet. Frittata. Egg salad. Raw over tartare. Raw over bibimbap.

Scrambled eggs, omelets, and frittatas are the sneakiest ways to combine eggs and leftover vegetables. Poached eggs are the most elegant presentation and the most versatile—over a buddha bowl, a messy sandwich, an open-faced sandwich, or a greens salad. Any of the boiled options pair well with a buddha bowl, grains, or vegetable salad. Deviled eggs and egg salad can stand alone as delightful brunch or lunch courses.

Some cooking methods are easier than others, and you’ll narrow down these options based on how you like your eggs. Regardless of your preference, eggs can easily, cheaply, and quickly turn a bunch of sides into a main course.

 

Shopping for Eggs

This is hard. So many labels, a lot of them unregulated. First, size matters only in pastries and baked goods.

In the US, no chickens are legally raised using hormones, so the label “raised without hormones” is meaningless.

Free-range = implies birds aren’t kept in cages and have “access” to outdoors. The USDA “free-range” label applies only to chickens used for meat; they do not regulate the term for eggs.

Cage-free = birds aren’t kept in cages but aren’t guaranteed outdoor access.

Natural = absolutely no standards or regulations for this term. This extends beyond eggs.

Organic = USDA-regulated; raised without cages and with access to outdoors; fed organic, all-vegetarian diets; and raised without antibiotics, pesticides, and insecticides. Also, eggs aren’t irradiated. Certified organic is the only way to guarantee the eggs were raised without antibiotics.

There are other voluntary labels with separate regulations to guarantee the animals’ living conditions, but we won’t get into that.

 

Storage

While your refrigerator may have divots in the door where eggs may fit nicely, that’s not the best place to store them. If you want them to last up to four to five weeks past the pack date, store them in their carton toward the back, away from strong-smelling foods. The shells are porous and can absorb odors.

 

Easy Peeling

Older eggs peel more easily than fresh ones. You can run boiled fresh eggs under cold water to help them peel more easily. Better yet, plunge them in ice cold water for five minutes and store them in the fridge.

 

Recommended resources

Why Eggs Are Healthy – Jamie Oliver

Foolproof Poached Eggs Recipe – SeriousEats.com

 

Recommended book by Highbrow

“Kitchen Hacks: How Clever Cooks Get Things Done” by America’s Test Kitchen

 

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