Saturday, December 5, 2009

Eating Eggs and Egg Tips!

Eggs Scrambled, poached, fried benedict? It doesn’t matter which way, I love them all. When I was a child I could conceive of cooking many things but eggs were not one of them. Eggs could be cooked in so many different ways and each one would give them a different flavor and feel in your mouth.

As I grew up and went to culinary school I realized that I was not alone. There were 25 students in my class and all of us struggled with make eggs and a few of us even struggled with eating them. The school was prepared and ready to break down the wall of intimidation. They reserved an entire day just for eggs. The day challenged us all and forced us all to learn cracking them with one hand, picking out old from new and scrambling with out them turning green/gray. In the end the most surprising thing was out of all 25 students and the exact same recipe all of us had different tasting eggs.

When I get home late after work I am usually starving. I constantly think about my health and what will make me feel good now and later. When I am famished at night and it is too late for a big heavy meal or I want something that is savory rather than sweet I always make eggs. The versatility makes me feel like I am having something new and different every time.

Eggs also keep for up to two weeks, so if I don’t get to the store, they can be my back up plan. Plus I am usually satiated and I always have a good night sleep because my body isn’t working on overload to break down heavy foods, which means I am more alert when I wake up for work in the morning.

Common Questions About Egg-

What kind of eggs should you buy? White or brown? Large or Xlarge? Grass fed, free range and organic? There are so many options out there, and it gets confusing.

This is a tough question, but thankfully, there is really no right or wrong answer. Most recipes call for you to buy large eggs and using Xlarge eggs in place of large eggs in a recipe might throw off the balance of what you are cooking.

As far as color goes, colors are arbitrary one tastes the same as the other. Multi colored eggs can be placed in the fridge so you know which you should eat first– in other words, indication to which one is more perishable. Alternate buying brown eggs one week and white the next as a way to color code their age.

When it comes to how the chickens are raised and fed, buy eggs made from free-range, grass fed chickens. And if there is an organic option, always choose it. Again, this has to do with both taste and supporting sustainable agriculture.

How do I separate an egg without breaking the yolk?

Have you ever read a recipe that asks you to separate the egg white from the egg yolk and panicked? You’re not alone. Clean egg separation is a task that takes patience and practice. Are you up to the challenge?

It is always best to crack the egg on a solid surface with a single, hard firm hit. Repeated strikes against the surface will increase your chances of breaking the yolk, making a mess of your whites. Skillful separation is an important skill because many recipes will ask you to whip the whites. And, if there is any yolk residue in the whites, the eggs will not whip (fat from the yolk prevents proper whipping).

There are a lot of expensive gadgets designed to assist you in this task, but honestly, they are not worth the price tag. Simply relax and let your hands do job. To ensure perfect egg separation let the whites drip slowly through your fingers, all the while keeping the yolk in the shell. Sure, it’s sticky. But getting messy is part of the fun!

Broken Egg Emulsion

Can you fix an egg emulsion that has been broken?

For those of you who don’t know, a broken egg emulsion is where the egg mixture looks greasy because the oil has not been absorbed into the egg. It ends up looking like two separate ingredients instead of one, like vinegar mixed with oil. It takes a little time and practice, but it can be fixed. To correct a broken emulsion you need to create a new mixture of egg yolk and oil, mix it thoroughly, and then slowly add the broken mixture into the new mixture. You might have to add more lemon but it will end up tasting just as good.

For a Lazy Sunday Mornings Capresse Frittata


1. 8 eggs

2. 1 bunch basil chiffonade*

3. ½ cherry tomatoes

4. 4-5 slices of buffalo mozzarella

5. 1 tbsp olive oil

6. Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat your oven to 325. Crack and beat eight eggs, add a touch of salt and a bit of pepper. It is helpful to let the beaten egg mixture run through a strainer (this will help to mix the white and the yellow parts of the egg together). In a non-stick oven safe pan heat with olive oil on medium high heat. Add cherry tomatoes whole, cook for a few minutes. Then add your eggs, turn it down to a medium low heat and add in the rest of the ingredients. You can let your kids put the basil and cheese into the pan .

Put this into the oven for 10-15 minutes. It should be solid if you move it around, and slightly golden brown on top. Take it out, let it cool. Place a plate over top and turn the pan over flipping the egg onto the plate. It is a very easy dish for you and your kids to make and you can make it ahead of time and let it rest. It tastes great even at room temperature

*Chiffonade: Roll the leaves of basil and then make very thin slices with a very sharp knife.

Eggs on the Go!

2 whole eggs

1 tbsp olive oil

1 whole-wheat pita pocket

¼ c uncooked spinach leaves

1 tbsp low fat cheese

In a small non-stick sauté pan add olive oil to the pan. On a medium low heat crack two eggs. Use a rubber spatula to break the egg yolks into the egg whites. Rapidly beat the eggs to incorporate the yolks into the whites. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Cut pita round in half and open the pocket. Next stuff the eggs, cheese and spinach into the pita. Wrap with a paper towel or with a deli paper. This should take around 6-7 minutes total. Healthy meal on the go. *Or use the egg separation trick and use only egg whites for an even healthier