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Friday, April 29, 2011

The Chicken and The Egg

Colorful Brookfarm Eggs
 I have always loved this time of year.  Besides April being my birthday month, I love Easter and Springtime.  The bunnies, chicks, and chocolate that find their way into our Easter baskets and let's not forget the real bunnies and chicks that are reproducing this time of year with great benefits for us all, as in, feeding us.  

My neighbors have had chicks for years, but this past year they decided to start selling them to a few of us  within earshot.   Their chickens have just come into their laying "season."  I love fresh eggs and the difference in taste is palatable.  I find their yolks to be brighter in color and the eggs stand up in the whites more firmly.  I am continually re-stocking for the many different dishes that I prepare with eggs.  I can't seem to get enough of these beauties.

A few favorites of mine are poached eggs on crusty country toast with a drizzle of olive oil and avocado slices or Huevos Rancheros served over creamy polenta also with poached eggs.  Shaved, hard boiled eggs over Grilled Asparagus, or into a salad adds a nice little smack of protein and color.

To poach an egg, first, crack it into a small bowl or cup, this serves two purposes; 1) if the egg is bad, it won't contaminate whatever else you are cooking it with. 2) it allows you to slowly slip it into either boiling water or a small cup without breaking the yolk.  Cook for no more than 5 minutes for a firm, but still oozing poached egg.

My Huevos Rancheros creation with creamy polenta, black beans, corn salsa, tomatillo salsa and guacamole with a corn tortilla.

Whether you are cooking frittatas, poached or fried, or scrambled, enjoy eggs when they are fresh.  There is no way to tell how old an egg is when you pick up a carton at the grocery store, but there is a test that you can try. 

Gently drop the egg into the bowl of water. If it:

•sinks to the bottom and stays there, it is about three to six days old.

•Sinks, but floats at an angle, it's more than a week old.

•Sinks, but then stands on end, it's about two weeks old.

•Floats, it's too old and should be discarded.
Chickens from Brookfarm

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