Monday night I gave a workshop on backyard poultry owning for our local town’s Adult Education program.
This is the second time I’ve given this workshop and many who attended are also signed up for the advanced class next week on “now that you have a flock, what’s next?”
Monday’s class covered the basics. How to get chicks, what’s the difference between a straight run and sex-linked birds (a very important thing to know), and what to feed your birds as chicks and then as egg-laying hens.
We talked a lot about eggs.
First of all, when the eggs are laid, they are covered with a thin film of oil that acts as a barrier protecting them from bacteria and water loss (the water content of an egg is high, if the water evaporates from inside, you’re going to have a bad egg.) If you don’t wash the egg, it can sit on your counter for a few days un-refridgerated and still be good. Think about it, in colonial times, they didn’t have refrigerators, most often the eggs sat in the kitchen until they were ready to be used.
Once you wash that oil coating off, however, the egg must then be refrigerated. In the refrigerator it can last up to a few months, but a washed egg on the table will only last a few days.
There are a few questions that I always get asked, one of which is how do you clean the eggs? Continue reading