A week or so ago, a hard-working and ambitious friend generously presented me with a dozen eggs from her own chickens, along with a little jar of honey from her very own bee hives! Two major treats. The eggs are long gone – we eat eggs almost daily in our home. The honey is being savored by me, by the teaspoonful, or in a sandwich with spelt bread, lightly toasted, and all natural peanut-butter.
I never thought much about how much attention chickens would require if you raised them yourself, but my friend revealed that she and her husband rise at 4:30 a.m. to tend their chickens and walk the dogs before they go to their full-time jobs. There’s much more to it, but just getting up that early is enough to make me believe these people are super-heroes. They love their chickens and noted that each has its own personality and one or two of the hens likes to be held and cuddled. So, these chickens are really pets with the added benefit of eggs for daily enjoyment. And, oh, the eggs!
I had heard that really fresh eggs have bright orange yolks, and you can see from the picture above that is true in this case. And they taste better to me – perhaps because I know that they came from happy chickens, raised in a loving home.
Here’s a little kitchen hint for you, brought about, as so many good ideas are, to fix a mistake. While cooking this batch of eggs in the photo I was distracted, rushing to get somewhere, and removed them from the hot water a bit too soon. Hours later after refrigeration, the eggs remained a bit soft and difficult to shell. Rather than struggling to peel them, I cut each egg in half with a very sharp knife, and used a pointed spoon to scoop out the egg into a bowl. It worked pretty well – you still need to be careful of shells, but this method is a winner. Just smoosh the eggs with a pastry cutter or knife and fork and add whatever condiments and spices you enjoy – I use a little mayo, sea salt and fresh pepper, and a couple dashes of ground mustard – and you have a lovely egg salad. Let me know how it works for you…