Sunday, September 25, 2011

An Egg-cellent Eggs-periment

My coworker has chickens. That's right, her and her family have a hen house, hens, roosters, fresh eggs, the whole kit-and-cockadoodle. The closet farmer in me is a bit jealous, but let's face it we are in no shape to take care of chicks in this city. Lucky for us, she has been kind enough to give the gift of fresh eggs and provided me an assortment of specialty eggs for the weekend. This was the perfect opportunity for an "eggs-periment" and I was very pleased with the results.

I've never seen eggs like these before and assuming most of you haven't either, I'll give you a little background:

French Black Copper Marans or the "Painted Egg"
Eggs produced by the Black Copper Marans are prized by chefs. The shell is not originally a dark brown, but becomes "painted" as it is laid. The dark chocolate color could be rubbed off the shell.

Barred Rocks or "Plymouth Rocks"
As evident by it's name, Rocks chickens are the original American. This egg was the biggest of the bunch and was light pink in color with brown specks.

How cute is this little guy??
Photo credit: Wikipedia
Ameraucana + French Black Copper Maran or "Green Eggs and Ham"
This cross-bred egg has an olive green color, making it the true egg of our favorite Dr. Seuss story.

Ameraucana or "Easter Eggers"
The smallest and prettiest of all the eggs. These eggs have very smooth mint green shells because the chickens have what the American Poultry Association (APA) has dubbed the "blue-egg gene" and the chickens must fully meet the APA's strict breed description to be a true Ameraucana. Unlike the "painted" Maran eggs, the actual shell is the color it appears and would not rub-off.

The Eggs-periment

From left to right: Ameraucana, Green Eggs and Ham, Barred Rocks, Black Copper Maran
I decided to poach each egg for this experiment because I just really love the style and figured it would give me a good idea of how eggs can cook differently, even using the same cooking method. The "Green Eggs and Ham" egg poached into the perfect little ball, but the yoke cooked a little more than I had anticipated. The Ameraucana (bluish-green egg) had the runniest yoke of the four. All eggs were easy to poach and had magnificently yellow and creamy yokes. If I had to pick a favorite for taste, it would be a tie between the Barred Rocks (pink egg) and the French Black Copper Maran (dark chocolate colored egg). As you can see, I have several eggs left so please let me know if you have any eggs-cellent suggests for their use! I'm thinking crab benedict...

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