Storing Fresh Eggs Without Refrigeration
I have been informed you may store fresh chicken eggs in the earth only after coating them with a petroleum product. Is this a safe way to store the eggs and how long will they last?
I don't know about storing them in the earth - seems kind of inconvenient to me. But, yes, you can store fresh eggs in the panty or storage area for many months.
We have been duped all these years about eggs needing to be refrigerated. First of all, they come out of the chicken "warm" don't they? ;)
A just-laid egg has a coating on it called the "bloom". This coating keeps oxygen and bacteria out of the egg. If you are lucky enough to have fresh eggs straight from the farmer, they can be kept in a cool place for months without refrigeration.
Egg producing companies are required by the USDA to wash the eggs, therefore washing off the bloom. So when you buy eggs from the store you will know the bloom has been washed off. Coating them lightly (but completely) with mineral oil is like replacing the bloom.
Here's how to prepare eggs for storage:
Put on some food handling gloves (because mineral oil is a petroleum product and you don't want to absorb it into your body). Slightly warm about 1/4 cup of mineral oil. Take all the eggs out of the carton (or you won't be able to get them out with oily hands). Rub each egg with mineral oil and put them back into the carton small
pointed side down.
Store egg cartons in a cool place (68 degrees or less is fine) and they will last for months. If stored at room temperature, only store them for a couple of weeks.
Write yourself a note to remember to flip the cartons (gently) about once a month to maintain the integrity of the yolks.
You may get a bad egg now and then but don't worry about eating bad eggs. You will know when an egg is bad - it will have a sulfur smell that your nose will not miss.
Another way to tell if your eggs are bad is to float them in water. The older the egg, the more it will float - about half way out of the water.
Be sure to date the stored cartons of eggs and rotate them to use the oldest first.
Eggs, cheese and butter are only refrigerated in the U.S. Other countries don't put these products in the refrigerator. It is required by the USDA, not for our protection, but to avoid lawsuits. So however you store food in your home is your choice.
Eggs come in a variety of colors.
Can you leave eggs out on the counter overnight?
Yes, you can. Leaving them just overnight will not ruin them.
There has been much discussion over time about storing eggs, mainly refrigeration versus storing them at room temperature, like on the counter or in a pantry.
Mother Earth News did an experiment with dozens of eggs, storing them many, many months, using methods I never could have dreamed up.
They stored them in a water solution, in sawdust, in lard, covered with Vaseline, at room temperature, in the refrigerator, and more. It's an interesting experiment you might like to read.
The conclusion though is that, yes, eggs can be stored at room temperature, and best if they are unwashed and straight from the chicken. As soon as they are washed (washing removes their protective coating), their shelf life is decreased.
Now we all know that eggs from the supermarket are washed, which means that they will not last as long on the counter.
However, to reach the longest shelf life for egg storage, they are best kept in the refrigerator. Unwashed straight from the chicken/farmer AND refrigerated will give eggs a very long shelf life, maybe as much as a year.
Read the article from Mother Earth News and see what you conclude about egg storage.
Thanks for asking a much-wondered-about question.
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