Here are some fresh ideas to put excess eggs from your backyard chickens to good use!
Are your girls laying more eggs than you have room for? Do you have a lot of fresh eggs on hand? Is your refrigerator or kitchen counter starting to fill up with cartons or bowls of farm fresh eggs?
If you have more than three or four dozen fresh eggs at a time on hand, it's time for some new ideas for what to do with extra eggs!
Give Eggs Away
My favorite way to use extra eggs when my flock's egg production is high is to give extra eggs to neighbors, relatives, and friends who appreciate fresh eggs.
There's also the local food bank, food shelf, or a soup kitchen--give them a call and see if they'll be happy to get your extra eggs--my local programs even offered to supply egg cartons.
Do you need some great ideas beyond the usual deviled eggs, egg salad, and egg casserole or fritatta? My favorite egg recipe for extra eggs is the fluffy broiler-finished omelet, ala Robert Eichorn, innkeeper of the former Manchester Highlands Inn in Vermont.
This omelet is made by beating a few eggs, adding a dash of salt and water, and cooking in a good non-stick pan. You push a spatula into the edges of the cooking omelet to let runny egg coat the bottom of the pan.
Finish cooking the top of the omelet under the broiler for a couple minutes, then fold in half over a handful of shredded cheese, or some diced ham, (or a dollop of salsa and sour cream).
All you need is some hot sauce and yummm.
Hard boil a dozen eggs at a time and leave in the fridge for salads: green salad, macaroni salad, potato salad, and egg salad. Also, just slice in half, season with salt and pepper, or dip in hot sauce for a snack or egg salad sandwiches.
Do you know the best way to get easy-peel hard-boiled eggs? Steam for 10 minutes (soft yolks) or 13 minutes (hard yolks) and then shock the eggs with cold water.
Empty the water after about two minutes and refill the pot again with cold water. The steam heat and then the cold water bath will break down the membrane that holds the shell to the egg. The egg shells will peel off with no problem!
Pasta and... Eggs?
Pasta and eggs are a match made in heaven. First, you can easily make homemade pasta with just eggs, flour, salt, and a rolling pin! Check out this recipe from the Pioneer Woman blog.
Artisan Bread in Five has an awesome brioche recipe that lasts for while in the fridge and uses eight eggs (four if you halve the recipe).
This recipe can also be used to make a cinnamon swirl bread (perfect for a weekend breakfast with an omelet). French toast is another breakfast recipe that uses a few extra eggs. Do you have any other easy bread recipes that use lots of eggs? Send them our way in the comments below!
Pie for Everyone!
If you have a good pie crust recipe (or if you don't mind picking up a frozen crust from the grocery store), quiche and fritattas are a good way to use eggs.
Speaking of pie, lemon curd or lemon meringue pie is another way to use up extra eggs.
I use a crust recipe my mother gave me that I whip up quickly in the food processor, and usually I make apple or strawberry rhubarb so my extra eggs go into the made-from-scratch crust. Get extra credit for providing the recipe author in the comments. Try Smitten Kitchen's quiche recipe and Kitchn has a good frittata tutorial.
I've always wanted to try pickled eggs. I'll probably try this recipe to pickle eggs from the University of Georgia.
Have you tried freezing eggs? Freeze eggs by whipping egg yolks and whites together and then measuring quarter measuring cup portions into silicone muffin tins or ice cube trays.
Or, separate the egg yolks and egg whites and freeze separately if you do a lot of baking that requires one or the other. Frozen eggs are best used in baking and other recipes with multiple ingredients.
Old-Fashioned Long-Term Egg Storage
Two old-fashioned ways to preserve eggs for long-term storage are using sodium silicate, known as "water glass," and lime water. Lehmann's sells the sodium silicate needed for preserving eggs in water glass.
I found a discussion of preserving eggs and an old lime water recipe from a hundred years ago. I probably won't be trying these any time soon but let us know if you do!
Fresh Egg or Old Egg?
Finally, do you know how to tell a fresh egg from an old egg? It's simple! Fill a bowl or pot with five or six inches of water. A REALLY fresh egg will sink to the bottom on its side. A fresh egg will sink to the bottom with one end up.
An old egg will float (discard any floating eggs). The reason? The air pocket within each egg grows larger over time and as moisture evaporates through the porous shell of an egg.
What is your favorite way to use fresh eggs? Let us know in the comments below!
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