Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Eggs, Dried

How to preserve eggs is a big question for those with chickens.  Chickens will lay and lay and lay throughout spring and summer, then when they molt, they will stop.  My chickens lay steadily for about 7 months, during which time we have more eggs than we can use (even giving one to the day every day!).  We give away tons of eggs.  And then fall hits, and the chickens quit, and we have to buy eggs.  Now, there are some great egg producers in our area, and they sell fabulous eggs.  But if our chickens lay more than we can use, why can't we save some of those for later?

One way to preserve eggs is to dry them*.  (You can also pickle them and freeze them, but I haven't tried either of those methods, yet.)

First, I took 8 eggs and blended them well.

Then, I poured those blended eggs onto plates -- my dehydrator sheets do not have ridges or raised edges that would keep the egg from dripping off.

I set the dehydrator to 145 degrees and let it work overnight.  When I opened it the next morning, I had three plates with very dry egg.

I chipped the egg off the plates (that was easier than I thought it would be), and then put the crumbles back in the (clean, dry) blender.

I blended the dried egg to a fine powder and put it in a jar.  Eight dried eggs filled about half a pint jar.

Dried eggs.  Easy.  The big question, however, is: how can they be used?  Obviously, sunny-side up is out of the question, as is hard-boiled, but I hear they can be used in baking and for scrambles.  So I tried a scramble.

Mix one tablespoon of dried egg with two tablespoons warm water and mix.

Put the mixture in a hot frying pan and scramble.


Add a little salt or other seasoning, and give them a try.

Verdict: the eggs do not taste exactly like fresh eggs -- they are a little gritty.  But with seasonings and/or sauces and/or vegetables added, they make a passable scramble -- a great way to preserve some of your eggs for winter when the hens aren't laying, or for taking on camping trips.
Store them in a sealed container in a cool, dry location.

*A reminder to be careful with the eggs you choose.  Eggs can carry a variety of food-borne pathogens, so only dehydrate eggs you trust, and keep the temperature appropriately high.

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