Egg Food Facts

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Grading Eggs

There are three grades for eggs: U.S. Grade AA, U.S. Grade A, U.S. Grade B. All egg cartons that are marked "A" or "AA" are not officially graded. Egg cartons must have the USDA grade shield to have been officially graded.

Egg Carton

The difference in the quality of eggs can be determined by the amount of spread when they are broken. U.S. Grade AA eggs will have a small spread, be thick, very white and have a firm high yolk. U.S. Grade A eggs will have more spread with a less thick white. U.S. Grade B eggs will have a wide spread, little thick white and probably a flat enlarged looking yolk. U.S. Grade C eggs have an even wider spread with a thin watery white.

Studies have shown that egg yolks have less cholesterol than previously thought. They have been revised from 250mg to 200mg.

Calories in an egg: Whole Egg

  • 1 large egg: approximately 80 calories
  • 1 egg white: approximately 20 calories
  • 1 egg yolk: approximately 60 calories

Weight of Eggs Per Dozen:

  • Jumbo: 30 ounces
  • Extra Large: 27 ounces
  • Large: 24 ounces
  • Medium: 21 ounces
  • Small: 18 ounces
  • Pewee: 15 ounces

Measuring Eggs:

  • 1 large egg (2 ounces) equals one-quarter cup
  • 1 medium egg (1-3/4 ounce) equals one-fifth cup
  • 1 small egg (1-1/2 ounce) equals one-sixth cup

Quick Egg Food Facts

  • Boil cracked eggs in aluminum foil, which is twisted on the ends.
  • Egg whites should be beaten in a bowl with a small rounded bottom to reduce the work area and increase the volume.
  • The refrigerator shelf life of an egg is approximately 10 to 14 days.
  • To store deviled eggs, place the halves together with the filling and wrap tightly with tin foil, then curl the ends.
  • Egg will clean off utensils better with cold water then using hot water.
  • Keep unbroken eggs in a covered bowl because the shells are porous and will absorb odors as well as lose moisture.
  • Never buy eggs in Styrofoam containers, always buy them in paper cartons so that they will be recyclable.
  • Whole eggs cannot be frozen; the shells will crack as the liquid expands.
  • Yolks last longer when covered with water.
  • Egg whites should be kept in a tightly sealed container.
  • To remove eggs that are stuck to cartons, try wetting the carton.
  • To insure lasting freshness of eggs, rotate and mark them. If you place a small pencil mark on old eggs you will be certain to identify them and use them before recently purchased eggs.
  • To tell how old an egg is place the egg in a pan of cold water. If it lies on its side, it is fresh; if it tilts on an angle, it's approximately three to four days old. If the egg stands upright, it's probably about ten days old; if the egg floats to the top, it is old and should not be used.
  • Hard cooked eggs should never be frozen because it changes the taste and texture of the egg.
  • Add salt to water when hard-cooking eggs, it makes them easier to peel.
  • To easily separate egg yolks from whites, poke a small hole in the end of an egg and drain the white through the hole. After you have drained the egg white, just crack the egg open for the yolk.
  • To tell if an egg is hard boiled or raw, place the egg on its side and spin it evenly on a level surface. If it wobbles, it is raw.
  • To insure longer lasting freshness, rub oil, butter, or pure glycerin over the whole egg shell.
  • Never use aluminum bowls or cookware when beating egg whites; eggs tend to darken. Use glass, enamel or stainless steel.
  • Dishes with caked on egg should be washed first in cold water which will release the egg protein better than hot water.
  • An excellent product called "Just Whites" is a powdered egg white only product which reduces the fat in eggs and can be used in cakes, muffins, meringue and souffles.
  • Eggs will age more during one day at room temperature than they will in one week under refrigeration. Eggs will only last two to three days without refrigeration.
  • Always thaw frozen eggs in the refrigerator.
  • Egg whites become firm at 145 degrees; yolks at 155 degrees.
  • Egg whites contain more than one-half the protein in an egg.
  • The twisted strands of egg white (chalazae) cords that hold the yolk in place are more prominent the fresher the egg.
  • The egg yolk color depends on the chicken's food source.
  • The yolk of an egg contains three-fourths of the calories of the entire egg.
  • Never buy eggs that are shiny as they are probably old and of poor quality.
  • Duck eggs develop harmful bacteria when they age. This can only be destroyed by boiling the eggs for 10 to 12 minutes.
  • For a good plant fertilizer, dry eggshells in the oven then pulverize them in a blender to make bone meal.
  • When you poach eggs, try adding a little vinegar and salt to the water. This will set the eggs and keep them in shape.
  • When making scrambled eggs, use a small amount of water instead of milk; milk makes the eggs watery and does not blend well. Water makes eggs fluffy.
  • When freezing eggs, you should always break the yolks. Whites can be frozen alone, yokes can be frozen alone, or you can freeze them together. Yolks do not freeze well unless broken. This is also handy when you need just egg whites for angel food cake.
  • Remove eggs from the refrigerator at least one-half hour before beating. You will get more volume.
  • If you are going to whip eggs, they should be approximately three days old and at room temperature for the best results.
  • Always use fresh eggs for baking projects, the end results will always be better.
  • When poaching eggs, add a small amount of butter to the tin before placing the eggs inside to prevent them from sticking and the yolks from breaking; the pan is easier to clean, too!
  • To beat egg whites quicker and fluffier, add a small amount of salt, let them stand until they are room temperature, then beat.
  • When beating egg whites add a teaspoon of cold water and you will almost double the quantity.
  • Omelets will not collapse if you add a pinch of cornstarch and a pinch of confectioners' sugar to the yolks before folding in the whites.
  • If you add one teaspoon of vinegar to water when boiling eggs they may not crack.
  • To guarantee a white film over the eggs when cooking, place a few drops of water in the pan just before the eggs are done and cover the pan.
  • When you fry eggs try dropping a small amount of flour into the pan to prevent splattering.
  • If you come up one egg short when baking a cake, substitute two tablespoons of mayonnaise. This will only work for one egg.
  • Add food coloring to the water before boiling eggs, then you can tell the hard boiled eggs from the raw eggs.
  • To keep egg yolks centered, stir the water while cooking hard-boiled eggs. Great for deviled eggs.
  • An easy way to separate eggs is to place a small funnel over a small measuring cup. Break the eggs into the funnel.
  • Eggs should always be cooked at low temperature to guarantee a tender white and smooth yolk.
  • Remove all traces of egg yolk with a Q-tip or edge of a paper towel before trying to beat egg whites. The slightest trace of egg yolk will affect the results. Also, make sure your beater blades do not have any vegetable oil on them.
  • If you are making a number of omelets or batches of scrambled eggs, try wiping the pan with a piece of paper towel dipped in table salt after three batches. Your results will be much better with less food sticking to the pan.
  • To make a better omelet or scrambled egg dish, try adding a small amount of water instead of milk when you are beating the eggs. Milk products tend to harden the yolk, while water tends to slow down the coagulation of the yolk.
  • When handling eggs or removing them from the carton, try wetting your hands first and the eggs will not slip away.
  • To remove an egg shell from a hard-boiled egg, crack the egg and roll it around in your hand with gentle pressure. You then insert a wet spoon between the shell and the egg white and rotate the egg.
  • You can substitute two egg yolks for one whole egg when making custards, cream pie fillings and salad dressings.
  • You can substitute two egg yolks plus 1 teaspoon of water for one whole egg in yeast dough or cookies.
  • Egg yolks will keep better if you cover them with cold water and keep refrigerated.
  • Hard-boiled eggs will slice easier if you dip a knife in water before using it to cut the egg.
  • There is no difference between white eggs and brown eggs in either nutritional content or taste.
  • The best egg shells should be dull, not shiny or bright.
  • Egg sales have dropped 25 percent since 1984.
  • In a very fresh egg, the yolk will hardly be visible through the white.
  • The average hen produces about 200 eggs per year. The laying begins about five months after they are hatched.
  • Dried egg solids have 90 percent of the water removed.
  • To reduce calories, fat and cholesterol in recipes, use more egg whites and fewer egg yolks. You will not know the difference.
  • If an egg has a crack of any kind it is best not to use it.
  • While eggs contain cholesterol, they also contain lecithin which may provide enough good cholesterol (HDL's) to counteract the bad cholesterol (LDL's).
  • The FDA regulations now say that eggs must be refrigerated at all times during shipping and when they are stacked in stores.
  • Because of recent Salmonella outbreaks on the East Coast, the internal temperature of eggs must be kept below 45 degrees. Never buy eggs unless they are under refrigeration and ideally at a humidity level of 75 percent.
  • If eggs are dirty, do not wash before storing. You will remove a protective coating and they will not store as long.
  • A soft-boiled egg is safe to eat as long as it is cooked for at least 3-1/2 minutes. This should raise the temperature of the egg to approximately 140 degrees and will pasteurize it.
  • Some eggs have been found to contain "microcracks" that may allow harmful bacteria to enter the shell. Cooking will kill the bacteria.
  • Basted eggs should be cooked for four minutes covered to be safe from bacteria.
  • The total digestive time for an egg is four hours.
  • After you make hard-boiled eggs, never place them in cool water after they are peeled. Eggs have a thin protective membrane that if removed or damaged and placed in water or a sealed container may allow for bacterial growth to begin.
  • To cool boiled eggs allow them to remain at room temperature and then refrigerate in an open bowl.
  • Do not overcook eggs or the yolk may turn a greenish color as a result of the leeching out of an iron compound. This happens more frequently in older eggs and is harmless.

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