“The Egg and I”, a 1947 madcap,slap-stick comedy starred Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray as Betty and Bob MacDonald. On their wedding night, Bob informs Betty he’s left his office job, purchased an abandoned chicken farm and plans to sell hen eggs. Betty exclaims in fright, “we know nothing about growing chickens”. While watching this “old” movie, it came me; there is nothing to know. All the chickens I ever met roamed around the barnyard all day ביצת יוני in the dirt, roosting at night in the hen house and laying eggs in the fresh straw daily provided. Buying eggs was simple and the only choices I needed to consider were size and color, brown or white. Today’s dizzying array of descriptions and labels makes purchasing a commercially produced carton of hen eggs akin to a college chemistry class. Do I choose barn eggs, cage eggs, free-range eggs, Omega-3 eggs, vegetarian eggs, or organically certified eggs.
Let me simplify this task by readily suggesting, almost insisting you purchase organically certified eggs. Your family, friends and neighbor’s will insist you continue to purchase organic upon tasting your cakes, biscuits and scones. Here’s why.
come from hens that are free to peck in the dirt
sleep nightly in a protected shelter that keeps them warm
daily eat pesticide, herbicide and fertilizer free meals along with fresh water
take no medication, hormones or meat by=products to “fatten” them up
exhibit higher Omega-3, Vitamin E and beta-carotene
Imagine my surprise the first time I cracked open an organic egg. The yolk glistened with a rich warm yellow color while the white was crystal clear and firm much unlike the eggs I had regularly consumed since leaving my childhood farm.
I cannot sacrifice quality for price despite the fact that organic eggs come at a higher price, often selling for $3.50 – $4.00 per dozen, while commercial eggs can be found for $.99 a dozen on sale. As a consummate baker, my cakes, biscuits and scones achieve a higher rise rate provided by the excellent binding found in the beaten organic egg.
- Angel Food Cake, using 12 whites, no longer requires creme of tartar to maintain the dense egg white peaks.
*Roz’s Passover Sponge Cake, requiring 10 eggs separated, rises an additional 2 inches when the yolks have been beaten to a luscious ribbony batter.
*Divinity (meringue candy), calling for 3-6 stiffly beaten whites, sets upon dropping from a wet spoon
*Caesar salad exudes the richness and silky texture found only in a quick set coddled egg. (All eggs contain the risk of salmonella, however, organic hens possessing all the qualities of a free range flock test positive for less occurrence. This, in large measure, is due to flock size, smaller than commercial enterprises.)
- Omelettes set up at a faster rate allowing for a delicately moist interior while achieving a golden brown exterior and the classic Caesar salad exudes the richness and silky texture found only in the coddled organic egg. (All eggs contain the risk of salmonella, however, organic hens possessing all the qualities of a free range flock have been shown to test positive for less occurrence. This is do in large measure to the size of the flock, smaller than a commercial enterprise.)