Ever since mankind domesticated chickens eggs have graced our tables.
Many birds’ eggs are edible, but chefs generally refer to hen’s eggs as “egg”. It comes perfectly packaged in its shell, and when truly fresh its delicate taste is incomparable to anything else.
French chefs like to emphasize the flavour of black truffle by blending small bits in scrambled eggs and serve it in an empty eggshell for effect. It is simply delicious!
Eggs are versatile, easy and fast to prepare and can be used in sweet or savoury dishes.
Despite what most people say, brown eggs taste the same as white. Colour of the shell varies according to the breed of hen, and its diet influence the colour of the yolk.
Among the many valuable properties of eggs are their subtle flavour, ability to improve the taste of anything in a pot, render the texture smoother, and delicate.
The true craftsmanship of a chef manifests itself how well s/he cooks an omelet “baveuse” (runny). Although these days health authorities insist that all eggs be cooked thoroughly, a “runny” omelet tastes incomparably better than one cooked to dryness.
The egg is a basic building bloc in the kitchen yet cooking an egg is not as simple as it might seem. It requires knowledge and a feel for delicacy and attention to detail.
An egg is made up of two parts: the white (water and protein) and the yolk (water, fat and protein). Yolk coagulates at a higher temperature than white; the reason of runny cooked yolks and firm whites.
In many countries of the European Union, eggs are stamped with the date they are laid. In North America they have a use-by date. Generally an egg properly stored is considered to be fresh for 21 days after lying, but officials consider even a five-week-old egg fresh.
The age of an egg is important to the cook, as its characteristics change over time.
Beside hen’s eggs, quail and duck’s eggs are quite popular. Ostrich eggs are large and appropriate only for large batches of scrambled eggs.
Overcooked eggs turn rubbery and dry. Once eggs are scrambled they should be consumed. If you want to keep them in a chafing dish, as many hotel buffets do, add a little cream to keep them moist for a little while. The best thing to do is cooking small batches at a time.
Eggs are graded by size, from peewee to extra large. The difference between the upper and lower range is 75 grams per dozen. Recipes requiring eggs are based on large eggs, which may vary up and down five percent therefore bakers, weigh eggs for uniform results. Many large bakeries use now frozen liquid eggs for convenience but they lack in taste.
Researchers at the University of Connecticut have shown that eating three eggs a day does not raise heart disease factors in healthy elderly people, Yale University researchers concluded that eating eggs daily does not lead to increased levels of low density lipoproteins, a.k.a bad cholesterol.
Eggs are low fat, contain 15 essential nutrients, only 70 calories each, and lutein.
Buy eggs from high turnover stores and only enough to last only a few days, and if possible from farmers.
Store them in an odour-free, refrigerated space as eggs absorb off odours.
Fresh eggs take longer to cook than those a week old and are best for poaching.
Old eggs are good for boiling.
Old eggs float in a glass of water whereas fresh eggs sinks to the bottom.
Only the yolk of an egg contains saturated fat (five grams per egg)
Eggs are nutritious, versatile, tasty, and for those with a knowledge of cooking, easy to cook. They cook quickly and possess an appealing texture.