Monday, October 22, 2012

Freezing Fresh Eggs for Winter

The girls have not even begun to slow down and not sure how much they really will. After all, it's late October and 80 degrees today! Still, this bounty of eggs can't last all winter as even our hardy hens will need to slow and give themselves a break. Green beans and strawberry jam from the garden- no problem. But eggs? I found a few resources and gave it a whirl. When eggs are on super sale or your own flock is laying like crazy, consider putting some up for later and you'll never find yourself running to the market mid recipe.
1. Crack however many eggs you intend to freeze into a bowl.

2. Optional: Add 1 teaspoon of sugar/honey or salt per full cup of eggs. Sweet for baking, salty for savory cooking. This is to prevent graininess in the yolk when thawed. Not sure if it's necessary but better safe than sorry. Be sure to LABEL which one is sweet/salty!

3. Whisk to combine and mix the yolk with the egg, ever so slightly. You don't want to mix air in, just combine.

4. Measure out in 3TB increments. 3TB equals 1 large egg. Quite handy as our chickens lay more medium size than large and all my recipes call for large. The teeny weeny 4oz jars perfectly held 6TB or 2 large eggs, with plenty of head room to freeze without cracking the jar. I also used a salsa jar, 1/2 pint size with wide mouth, for 3 eggs and it was a good fit.

5. Freeze. If freezing in solid containers, glass or plastic, flash freeze before you put the lid on. Pop them in the freezer till they are hard and expand so they don't crack the jar. Usually takes a couple of hours. Then put on the lid AND LABEL for storage.

6. Defrost in the fridge and you are ready to roll. Use 'em up within 6 months.
I tried freezing in the ice cube tray (each little nook held 2TB) but couldn't get them back out! Defrosted and made a scrumptious frittata but still. Will not be doing that again.
That orangey richness is one heck of a lot of beta carotene.

Handy sources for slightly different takes on freezing eggs and other homestead advice:
The Prairie Homestead

Fresh Eggs Daily

Mother Earth News

The Incredible Edible Egg

For more ideas on keeping chickens, follow along with my Pinterest board: Chickens and Garden!

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