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Eggs in General
Member Name: MALU
Eggs in General
Date: 09/04/10, updated on 16/04/13 (100 review reads)
Advantages: healthy, good taste, versatile
In the film Julie&Julia Julie does something extraordinary, something she hasn't done yet in her nearly thirty years, she eats an egg! I find that rather odd given that fried eggs are traditionally eaten for breakfast in English-speaking countries and you can get your fried eggs in at least five different varieties in the USA ('sunny side up', 'over medium', etc.). For reasons that aren't explained in the film Julie has known eggs only as ingredients in cakes but not as a food in its own right. The variety she tries is the poached egg (the egg is first cracked open in a bowl and then slid into a pot or pan of simmering water where it's cooked until the egg white has become firm, how firm or soft the yolk becomes is up to the cook's taste). She likes the taste which she, strangely, describes as 'cheesy'.
Fried eggs only deserve the name if the white and the yolk are kept distinct from each other rather than being mixed together. To achieve this is not an easy task, try as I may, I more often fail than succeed. But then I prefer scrambled eggs anyway. I beat the eggs in a bowl, add pepper and salt and then when they start getting firm in the pan, I usually sprinkle small pieces of cheese onto them before scrambling them with a fork or I make a frittata Italian style. (frittata=fried) Whatever one has got in the fridge that tastes good together with eggs can be used, namely, cooked vegetables, potatoes, pieces of cooked or fried meat, poultry or fish. If you're a skilled cook, you can flip the frittata out of the pan upside down onto a plate and then slide it back into the pan to fry the other side. But if you put a lid onto the pan, the result is also good.
Germans usually don't eat fried eggs for breakfast but have a boiled egg on Sunday morning when they've got more time for breakfast or on special occasions. What can be easier than boil an egg in water? Ha! It is an art to get it just right , some want to have it softer, others firmer. I don't eat boiled eggs in the morning so I don't have the necessary feeling, a visiting friend of mine who wanted one was rather miffed that I didn't get it right for her. I do boil eggs for noodle or rice salads or to simply put the slices onto a layer of ketchup on a sandwich.
I've got a slightly raised level of cholesterol and have informed myself on whether eating eggs is advisable or not, obviously nothing speaks against it. On the site Eggcyclopedia, which answer any possible question on eggs!, I've learnt that "eggs do not have a significant impact on blood cholesterol levels, so it's not necessary to avoid egg yolks and you can use egg whites freely." On the contrary, the health aspect of eggs is stressed explicitly, eggs contain a wide array of necessary nutrients. They have varying amounts of all essential vitamins plus many minerals and egg yolks even contain vitamin D, the so-called sunshine vitamin. Another site gives the information that "moderate consumption of eggs, up to two per day, does not appear to increase heart disease risk in healthy individuals." Two per day! You'd have to force feed me, two eggs per week are enough for me.
Of course, as with all food, eggs should be fresh. How does a customer know that they are? One egg looks like the other from the outside, so how to be sure which one is fresh and which one should be put in the bin so that you won't get salmonella poisoning, a disease you shouldn't take lightly, it may give you diarrhoea or constipation, headaches, stomach cramps, nausea, fever and/or blood in the faeces.
If possible you should buy your eggs at a farmer's market where you know that the farmer has taken them out of the hens' nests in the morning before coming to the market. If that isn't possible, buy eggs on which the date of delivery is stamped. Fresh eggs can be kept for up to eighteen days at room temperature because they still have their own antibodies against germs, after this period they should be put in the fridge. A desert like the Italian speciality Tiramisu for which you use raw eggs shouldn't be prepared with eggs older than eighteen days. The dish should be put in the fridge at once and only for up to 24 hours.
Of course, fresh eggs can also be put directly in the fridge, if you do this, they can be considered edible for up to 28 days. After this period eggs should never be used raw, only boiled or fried or as an ingredient in a cake, this can be done for another two weeks.
People with low immunity and small children should never eat raw eggs, fresh or not.
If you aren't sure how old an egg is, you can test it in a glass of water into which you've put a teaspoon full of salt. The older the egg, the bigger the air chamber in it as water evaporates through the shell with time.
- Fresh eggs sink to the bottom and stay there.
- An egg which is some days old raises its tip slightly.
- A two- to three-week-old egg floats vertically in the glass, it should be eaten at once.
- An egg that swims freely in the glass the tip pointing to the bottom is about two months old, it should be thrown away.
Another method is to break the egg, pour the content on a plate and look at it intently. With a fresh egg the yolk and the egg white are noticeably convex. With age the yolk becomes flatter, the egg white spreads all over the plate and later both yolk and egg white mix, a sure sign that the egg isn't edible any more.
Rotten eggs don't necessarily have to end in the bin, maybe there's a manifestation in your town organised by your political opponents. Go and express your opinion in an original way! The rotten eggs may be a change from the habitual tomatoes. If you've ever had the opportunity of smelling a rotten egg, you'll know that you won't be easily forgotten.
Summary: Ei, Ei!