We all rely on the printed dates on the packaging to tell when the food will go bad. But when it comes to eggs, we sometimes tend to overlook the dates on the carton. While some of you are well aware that eggs DO have expiry dates, there are others (like us) who knew eggs spoil some day or the other but found the ‘expiration date’ a bit incomprehensible.
So while we were at it we found out that we can, for certain, ascertain when the eggs turn bad. It’s not that hard, all you need is your senses – sight and smell. Thanks to culinary expert Ken Roube, food writer Gabrielle Taylor and Nutritionist Dr Lovneet Bhullar Batra, we now have clarifications to – how to identify a bad egg from a good one or what to do with eggs that have unfortunately expired or how to slow down the expiry date just in case there’s just too few eggs and we’re lazy to go out and buy new carton of eggs. It doesn’t hurt to know something interesting!
If you’ve been throwing away eggs just because the date on the packaging says YOUR EGGS EXPIRES ON 11/02/2016 – you’re wrong.
It is often noted that eggs are still good to eat long after the expiration date. But what is the ideal expiry date for eggs? “The shelf life of an unrefrigerated egg is 7 to 10 days and for refrigerated egg it’s about 30 to 45 days,” notes Dr Batra. But that doesn’t mean you can pop a 2-month old egg for a quick omelet.
How To Refrigerate Eggs
– Eggs can last for about 5-6 weeks if refrigerated properly.
– It’s best to refrigerate eggs in their original carton inside the refrigerator instead of the door because the temperature is constant there
– Eggs should be transported and stored at as constant a temperature as possible – a temperature between 19°C and 21°C in the winter and between 21°C and 23°C in the summer
What Difference Does Refrigeration Make To The Quality of Eggs?
“Eggs are refrigerated to reduce salmonella risk. Eggs that are fresh and have an intact cuticle do not need to be refrigerated, as long as they are going to get consumed within a week. However, the grocery-store eggs should not be left unrefrigerated because they’ve had their cuticles essentially washed off. This increases the salmonella risk,” warns Dr Batra.
Are Eggs Safe To Consume Past the Expiry Date. What Is The Worse Things That Can Happen If You Accidentally Consume an Expired Egg?
“There is an increased risk for salmonella food poisoning if you accidentally consume an expired egg.” – Dr Batra
The Best Way To Test If The Eggs Have Expired Or Not Is…
Like mentioned earlier, your eyes and nose are the best judges, to determine the freshness of eggs, when put to a simple home test called Floating Test. It’s the best way to tell the freshness of an egg without cracking it.
How Floating Test Is Done
You don’t need a lab, if that’s what you thought, your kitchen essentials are all that you need.
-Fill a transparent bowl with cold water and place your eggs in it.
– If they sink to the bottom and lay flat on their sides, they are fresh and will make for a delicious omelet.
– If they stand on one end at the bottom of the bowl (in upright position) it means they are a few weeks old but still good to eat and as foodie Yumi Sakugawa tells the upright ones are perfect for hard-boiling.
– But if you find the eggs floating on the surface of the bowl, just know that they are no longer fresh enough to eat. Don’t toss them away just yet, put them to other uses (listed below).
Why Is Floating Test The Best Method
“The reason this method works is because the eggshells are porous, which means they allow some air to get through. Which means the eggs that have been freshly laid will have less air in them, so they sink to the bottom. But the older eggs which have had more time for the air to penetrate the shells become more buoyant (light weight) and so it floats on the surface,” explains Food Journalist Gabrielle Taylor.
There Is Another Method To Test the Freshness (By Cracking Eggs)
It’s called the Plate & Sniff test. Unlike the floating test where the shell remains intact, P&S requires to:-
– Crack the egg onto a plate or any flat surface to check if it’s fresh or not.
– If it’s fresh, the white shouldn’t spread much and the yolk should appear bright yellow/orange.
– Then give it a sniff: fresh eggs shouldn’t have much of a smell.
– If the egg is older, the white will be flowy and thin while the yolk will be flatter. But this does not necessarily imply the egg is bad for consumption. If it’s gone really bad, you can right away make the distinction from the strong, distinct smell.
So What Can You Do With Expired Eggs
– Use dried and crushed eggshells to fertilize plants as they primarily consist of minerals like calcium and magnesium
– Eggs can be a great conditioning and smoothening mask for the hair. Apply and leave for 20 mins and wash.
– Eggs can be used for cleaning leather
– Pickling is another option. Many practise turning eggs (that are almost about to be expired) into pickle so to avoid expiration.
But would nutritionist approve of it? “Pickling is a way to preserve the food so that it could be eaten months later.” However, Dr Batra notes, “during this process if the egg is being punctured with a toothpick to allow the pickling solution penetrate to the egg’s interior it could be dangerous as it can introduce clostridium. Eggs prepared with this method may also have high levels of botulinium toxins.”
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