What to do with an egg glut

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egg glut - pile of eggs on antique wooden egg tray

Last week, we looked after our neighbours’ chickens while they went on holiday. We’ve done it before but, back then, the brood was only about a third of the size it is now.

Some of the neighbours' chickens

Before long, we had an ever-growing pile of eggs mounting up in our kitchen. With each passing day, another 6 eggs or so were being added. What to do with our new-found egg glut?

Boiled eggs in a saucepan

I didn’t want to have either leftover yolks or leftover whites going to waste, so I looked into making dishes that used whole eggs.

These are the two savoury and one sweet recipes I decided on…

  • Pickled eggs – We’ve both lived nearly half a century but neither of us has ever eaten a pickled egg! They never look appetising sitting on a shelf, in jars, in a chip shop, for who knows how long! I didn’t have whole allspice, only ground, so my pickle liquid became a bit cloudy with a little sediment. You’re meant to leave them for a month before you eat them – so we’ll report back then.
  • Soy sauce eggs – Again, neither of us had tried these before. They’re wonderful! I’ve tried them quartered in a salad and will have some more with Singapore noodles tomorrow. Soy sauce eggs or shoyu tamago are traditionally eaten with ramen (Japanese noodle soup), which I love. They’re definitely going to be on the menu again soon.
  • Egg custard – This was a little disappointing to be honest – a bit unexciting. It had nothing over a traditional egg custard tart baked in a pastry case. Transforming it into either a crème caramel or crème brûlée are other good options.

Pickled eggs
Yields 7
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  1. 7 hard-boiled eggs
  2. ½tbs chilli flakes
  3. 1 pint distilled malt vinegar
  4. 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, rough chopped
  5. ½tbs white peppercorns
  6. ½dsp whole allspice
  7. 1. tie the spices in a piece of muslin and boil gently in the vinegar for 5 minutes
  8. 2. Pour into a bowl and remove the spices. Leave to cool
  9. 3. Shell the eggs and pack into a sterilised, wide-necked jar
  10. 4. Fill with the cold vinegar to cover the eggs completely. Screw or tie down and leave for a month before eating
Adapted from Cordon Bleu Preserving
H is for Home Harbinger http://hisforhomeblog.com/

Soy sauce eggs
Yields 6
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  1. 6 eggs
  2. 225ml water
  3. 225ml soy sauce
  4. 2tbs red wine vinegar
  5. large, thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, roughly chopped and crushed
  6. 3 star anise 'stars'
  7. 1tbs brown sugar
  8. soy sauce eggs ingredients
  9. 1. Boil the eggs, cool by plunging into cold water before peeling. Put into a heat-proof bowl, cover with cling film and set aside
  10. 2. In a small saucepan, add all the other ingredients and bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar
  11. soy sauce mixture
  12. 3. Remove from the heat and carefully pour over the boiled & peeled eggs
  13. 4. Allow to cool slightly before recovering the bowl in cling film
  14. eggs marinading in soy sauce mixture
  15. 5. Cool to room temperature before transferring to the fridge. Allow to marinate for at least 6 hours
Adapted from Cordon Bleu Preserving
H is for Home Harbinger http://hisforhomeblog.com/

Egg custard
Serves 4
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  1. 568ml/1 pint full fat milk
  2. 4 eggs
  3. 50g caster sugar
  4. 2tsp vanilla extract
  5. fresh nutmeg
  6. egg custard ingredients
  7. 1. Preheat the oven to 140ºC/Gas mark 1 and butter a round oven-proof dish
  8. 2. Pour the milk into a saucepan and heat until hot but not actually boiling
  9. 3. In a bowl that's large enough to take the milk as well, whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla. Then, still whisking, pour in the hot milk
  10. adding hot milk to egg mixture
  11. 4. Sit the buttered dish in a roasting tin to make a bain marie. Strain the custard mixture through a sieve into the buttered dish, then grate some nutmeg generously over the top
  12. uncooked egg custard
  13. 5. Pour freshly boiled water into the tin, to come about halfway up the baking dish, and gingerly (you don't want slopping and spillage) put it into the oven and cook for 1½ hours. You want the custard to set but only just
  14. cooked egg custard
  15. 6. Take the tin out of the oven, and the dish out of the tin, and let the custard cool a little before eating
Adapted from Kitchen: Recipes from the Heart of the Home
H is for Home Harbinger http://hisforhomeblog.com/