NDSU Extension - Sargent County


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Let’s Talk Eggs

Let’s Talk Eggs 3/23/18Earlier this week, a professional chef was interviewed on a network news program demonstrating and testing a kitchen gadget for making hard cooked eggs without the egg shell. 

The end result was a hard cooked egg that had a rough outer surface, much like an egg cooked in the shell that didn’t peel well.  Not pretty to present whole, or halved as a deviled egg, but certainly edible and usable, especially if it was to be chopped and used as an ingredient in egg salad or other recipes.

To successfully make hard cooked eggs in the shell, without the kitchen gadget that was demonstrated on the news program, start with eggs that have been refrigerated for 7-10 days.  Place them in a pan and cover them with cold water.  Heat over high heat, just until the water boils.  Then cover the pan and remove the pan from the heat. 

Let the eggs sit in the hot water.  How long will depend on the size of the eggs:  9 minutes for eggs that are sized by weight as medium (21 ounces per dozen), 12 minutes for eggs that are sized as large (24 ounces per dozen), and 15 minutes for eggs sized as extra large (27 ounces per dozen).

Immediately after the necessary amount of time has passed, drain off the water and serve the eggs warm, or cool them quickly and completely under cold running water or in ice water.  Refrigerate immediately or within 2 hours of cooking.  Peeled eggs should be used within 2 days; but in the shell, they can be refrigerated for up to one week. 

Eggs peel easier after they have cooled.  Roll the egg gently on a clean counter until the shell has small cracks all over.  Start peeling at the large end, holding the egg under cold running water to help loosen the shell.  A green ring on the outside of a hard cooked egg yolk can be the result of overcooking, especially if eggs are older.

Here are some important things to know about eggs:

- Choose eggs that have been kept refrigerated. Check to make sure that the eggs are clean and not cracked or broken.  It is not recommended to rinse or wash eggs at home;  that could lead to increased bacterial growth.

- Look at the “use by” date on the carton.  Properly refrigerated and stored eggs can last three to five weeks beyond the date listed on the package.  They should be stored in the carton, with the small end down, and the carton should be kept in the main area of the refrigerator.

- Most recipes are based on using eggs that are sized and labeled as large eggs (24 ounces per dozen).  You can use medium or extra-large eggs if the recipe calls for three or fewer eggs.

- Eggs are a good source of high quality protein, and also a relatively inexpensive source of protein.  Shell color does not affect the nutritional value or safety of eggs.

- Cook eggs until whites and yolks are firm. Cook egg mixtures until the center of the mixture is fully set (reaches 160 degrees F. on a food thermometer).

- Wash hands and items that touch raw eggs or their shells with soap and water. This includes counter tops, utensils and dishes.

For more practical tips about choosing, storing, and using eggs, check out the March issue of Oregon State University Extension’s Food Hero publication.  It is available online at http://foodhero.org/sites/default/files/monthly-magazines/web_eggs_march_18_monthly.pdf.

Photo Source: https://pixabay.com/en/egg-egg-carton-chicken-eggs-818191/ (downloaded 3/26/18)





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