Monday, May 18, 2015

Egg Food Facts: How to Freeze Eggs and Tips for Cooking Eggs

What do you do when the grocer has eggs on sale? Buy lots of them, or only a few? Can eggs be frozen? How do you use frozen eggs? How do you cook eggs? Is there a good egg substitute? If you enjoy purchasing eggs direct from a farm, the following egg food facts may be helpful

How to Freeze Eggs

Eggs that are getting old can be frozen. To freeze eggs, you can separate them into whites and yolks first, or freeze them together. However, yolks need to be broken to freeze well. Frozen eggs should be thawed in the refrigerator. You cannot freeze eggs whole, though. The egg shells will crack as the liquid is frozen.

To use frozen then thawed eggs in cooking, use these measurements:
  • 1 large egg = 1/4 cup
  • 1 medium egg = 1/5 cup
  • 1 small egg = 1/6 cup
If you separate your eggs, yolks will keep longer if you cover them with cold water and keep them refrigerated.

Another alternative is to keep whole powdered eggs in the pantry.

Tips for Cooking Eggs

When boiling eggs, add some food coloring to the water to make it easier to know which eggs are hard boiled and which are raw. Stirring the water while the eggs are cooking will keep the yolks centered, making the resulting hard boiled eggs perfect for deviled eggs. Adding a teaspoon of white vinegar to the boiling water will often prevent eggs cracking during boiling. When cooling hard boiled eggs, cool at room temperature, then refrigerate. Do not rinse or place them in cool water after peeling. This may cause dangerous bacterial growth. When slicing hard boiled eggs, first dip your knife in water to make smoother, more perfect slices. Soft boiled eggs need to be cooked for at least 3 1/2 minutes to be safe to eat.

When boiling farm fresh eggs, add a teaspoon of salt to the water. This will help make peeling the eggs easier. Otherwise, the shell will stick to the white of the egg and make it very difficult to peel the hard-boiled eggs.

Frying eggs is a southern tradition. Eggs should be fried at a low temperature to ensure a tender egg white and smooth yolk. If the pan is spattering, drop a pinch of flour into the pan to help prevent it. Whether you prefer your eggs sunny side up, over easy, or hard cooked, fried eggs are a quick, easy meal. Fried egg sandwiches, served with slices of onion, tomato, and a bit of mayonnaise are delicious.

Scrambled eggs and omelets are fluffier if you use water instead of milk in them. If making more than one omelet, use a paper towel sprinkled with salt to wipe out the omelet pan between omelets to prevent sticking.

When whipping egg whites for a meringue, make sure that there are no traces of the yolk in the whites. Yolk will prevent the whites from peaking. The corner of a paper towel or napkin, or a cotton tipped safety swab make it easy to remove small bits of yolk from the whites. Mixer blades must be free of vegetable oil and shortening. For best results in volume, use eggs that are at least three days old and remove the eggs from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before beating them.

Poached eggs will set and keep their shape better if you add a little vinegar and salt to the water before cooking at a low temperature.
Eggs have gotten a bad reputation in recent years, due to their cholesterol content. However, they also contain lecithin which often provides enough HDL cholesterol to counteract the LDL cholesterol that is so unhealthy. As a solid source of high protein, eggs should be a part of everyone's diet.

Quite often, we purchase large quantities of farm fresh eggs direct from the farm. By freezing some of them, we have eggs for an extended period of time. Try it. You may find that having frozen eggs on hand makes cooking easier.

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