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Getting to Know Eggs

Let’s face it – most people love eggs. So versatile, they can feature in your breakfasts, lunches, dinners and desserts, but how much do you really know about eggs?

We wanted to shine a light on this understated staple, so we took a stroll to Harvest Hall to chat with resident eggsperts, Paul from Whisked and Sonhem from Eggs Plus.

First thing’s first: what’s the correct way to store your eggs?

“Eggs are naturally protected by their shells and can stand up pretty well in most weather situations. Normally, if your household stays cool (between 16-24 degrees), you will have no issue leaving your eggs out of the fridge,” says Paul from Whisked.

Sohnem at Eggs Plus agrees that eggs do not necessarily need to be stored in the fridge. “If you are eating them within a week then you can store them on the shelf, but I often say that if you are planning to keep them longer then in the fridge may be advisable. It does also depend on the weather, if it is the height of summer the house will be warmer, so keep them in the fridge and they’ll stay fresher for longer.”

And how long do eggs last?

“This really does depend on where you are buying your eggs from and how old they are when you purchase them. At Whisked we buy our eggs fresh from the farms each week and only stock enough for that week, so our customers get them as fresh as possible,” says Paul.

“Because of this you will get the longest possible time out of our eggs, which will normally be 5-6 weeks. How long the eggs will last is a common question in the shop, and customers are usually shocked that the timeframe is so long.”

Eggs Plus get most of their eggs delivered once a week but some of the more popular varieties are delivered twice a week.

How to shop for the best eggs?

The easiest way to get the best eggs are to shop at a reputable store, such as Whisked or Eggs Plus at Prahran Market. The owners work directly with the farmers and take pride in ensuring quality.

“Eggs are a difficult one to shop for because you cannot see what’s inside,” continues Paul. “Your best chance of getting quality eggs is looking at the dates and making sure there are no visible cracks in the shells. We pride ourselves on quality control and check every dozen before they leave the shop.”

Sohnem agrees, “Definitely look for any visible cracks but if you are buying from a good store they should check this for you anyway.”

Favourite ways of using them?

Of course, there are so many different uses for eggs and so many dishes that feature them. While fresh is often best, there are certain common uses where the age is more important.

Poached and Boiled Eggs

Paul has some advice when it comes to poached and boiled eggs. “With certain dishes you need to look at how fresh the egg is. If you love your poached eggs, like me, then you need to ensure they are no more than 7-days-old. You can make do with slightly older but they start to get trickier to poach and no one really wants that.

“In the case of hard-boiled eggs though, you want them to be at least a week old. Otherwise when you try to peel those bad boys you will tear off most of the white with the shells.”

Flavour, of course, is a huge factor when choosing the right eggs for purpose. While sometimes the variety of bird doesn’t make a difference, the feed they eat, can. But try a Leghorn chicken egg (with white shells) and you will really notice. 

Scrambled eggs or omelettes

“Our customers definitely have their favourite eggs for different uses,” says Sohnem. “We have customers that love our South Gippsland eggs for scrambled eggs and omelettes as they are really creamy and have a really orange yolk. The deep colour of the yolk comes from the chickens being fed carraway seeds and carrots. 

Eggs for baking

“We also have people that swear our Milawa chicken eggs make the best cakes.”

Egg varieties

Paul agrees that you can get different flavours from different eggs, “When you look at duck, quail, goose, emu, ostrich and chicken eggs you will definitely get a range of pallet flavours,’ he says.

So, which is Paul’s favourite egg in-store?

“I have to say our organic eggs that come from Scarsdale are our best egg in-store at the moment, but only by a chicken’s beak!”

And Sohnem’s egg of choice?

“We have just started stocking Alby’s eggs in the last few weeks and they have been really popular. They only have 100 birds per hectare, so they are truly free range, and they feed the chickens only with what they grow on the farm.”

Sohnem is also looking forward to getting ostrich eggs back in-store. “We are expecting to get ostrich eggs back in the coming months; the timing will depend on the birds and the weather, but they are really popular, and are the equivalent size of 12 chicken eggs.”

We are known to have unique and hard-to-find products, and eggs are no different. Ask at Whisked or Eggs Plus and you’ll find far more than just your regular chicken eggs. So, next time you are shopping for eggs, have a chat to the Traders and see if there’s an egg you’re yet to try – you never know, you might find a new favourite!

Feeling more confident about buying eggs? Visit both Traders in-store or shop with Whisked and Eggs Plus via Food Lovers’ Direct.

And for a little egg-spo in the kitchen, check out our pick of a few eggcellent recipes to try at home. We hope you enjoyed our hints and tips on getting to know eggs!

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