5 Things You Don’t Know About Storing Eggs
Keep eggs fresh and protected with these simple steps.
Many people think that storing eggs in the plastic holder that comes standard in most refrigerator doors is the way to go. Why else would fridge manufacturers add that nifty little feature?
However, this is a common misconception, so it’s time we set the record straight: This method is far from the best way to store eggs in your refrigerator.
Turns out, leaving eggs in their store-bought container and storing them on the middle shelf of your fridge is actually the best way to keep them fresh longer.
So if you, like many others, having been storing your eggs all wrong for quite some time now, learning these five often overlooked do’s and don’ts of smarter egg storage can help you fix your faux-pas and quickly improve your food safety IQ.
1. Don’t ditch the store-bought carton.
No matter how much you love those adorable ceramic egg cartons or want to make use of the plastic egg-holder insert that came with your fridge, keeping your eggs in the Styrofoam or cardboard container you purchased them in is your best bet. These materials do a better job of cushioning your eggs to prevent breakage. Plus, the “best by” date is clearly marked, too.
2. Do keep eggs in a closed carton at all times.
Along with other criteria, in order for an egg to be USDA-grade, it’s required by law that eggshells be sanitized before being packaged and sold. But this process actually strips the eggshells of their natural protective oils — that makes the shells’ thousands of tiny pores more easily permeated by strong odors that could be lurking in your fridge. That’s why storing your eggs in their original, closed carton will help protect them from absorbing any strange food scents that could be circulating.
3. Don’t store eggs in the door of your refrigerator.
You may be under the common misconception that eggs should be stored in the door of your refrigerator, but the truth is, eggs are best stored in the main portion of your fridge on the middle shelf, ideally toward the back. The reasoning is that the temperature of your fridge stays the coldest and most consistent in this area, whereas the temperature of your refrigerator door, on the other hand, is prone to fluctuations, since it gets opened and closed regularly. And since eggs should be stored at temperatures of 45°F or lower, according to EggSafety.com, those fluctuations could pose a food-safety risk.
4. Do keep eggs facing upside-down in the carton.
We’re conditioned to think that the pointed side of the egg is the top, while the larger, more rounded side is the bottom, so it only makes sense that that’s how we’d naturally arrange them in their carton, if we were putting them in ourselves. But the next time you buy a carton of eggs, take a look at how they’re oriented — they should be round side up, pointed side down (assuming no one has messed with any). That’s because there’s a naturally occurring air bubble inside each egg’s rounded side, which helps keep the yolk more centered inside the egg and, in turn, will help your eggs stay fresh longer.
5. Don’t return used eggshells to the carton or reuse cartons.
Since eggshells are so permeable, bacteria that forms on used eggshells can easily contaminate the rest of your eggs, making them unsafe to eat — so never return used eggs to a carton, if you don’t plan on discarding it immediately. And you should never reuse an old egg carton for that same reason, too. According to the Food Safety and Inspection Service, “Egg cartons have been approved for a specific use and should be considered one-time-use packaging. Bacteria from foods that these packages once contained may remain
Here are a few starters for holiday parties:
Puff Pastry Starters/Treats
ASPARAGUS, PROSCIUTTO AND FONTINA TART
1 Sheet Of Puff Pastries Thawed
1 Bunch Asparagus Blanched And Dried
1 8 Oz Fontina Cheese Shredded
Roll The Sheet Into A 14×16 Rectangle. Spread Mustard Over The Surface 1 Inch From The Edge. Fold The Edge Over 1/2 Inch All Around The Crust And Crimp With A Fork. Place Asparagus Spears On The Inside Of The Crust. Sprinkle Fontina Over The Top. Bake At 400 Degrees For 20 Minutes. Until Crust Is Golden Brown. Cool 5 Minutes And Cut In Squares To Serve Warm.
SMOKY SAUSAGE CUPS
1 Sheet Of Puff Pastry Thawed
2 Cups Smoked Sausage Diced
1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
1/2 Cup Marmalade
Cut Puff Pastry Into 2 Inch Squares And Place Each In A Sprayed Mini Muffin Cup. In A Medium Bowl Add Diced Sausage, Mustard, And Marmalade. Mix Well. Place A Large Teaspoon Full Of Mixture Into Each Mini Pastry Cup. Bake At 400 Degrees For 15-20 Minutes Until Pastry Is Brown. Plate And Serve Hot.
1 Sheet Of Puff Pasty Thawed And Edges Rounded To Form A Circle
1 Round Of Brie
1/2 Cup Cranraisins
1/2 Cup Apricot Preserves
1/2 Cup Slivered Almonds Toasted
1 Sheet Of Puff Pasty Thawed, Rolled To 15×15 In Square, And Edges Rounded To Form A Circle. Spread Preserves Over The Rounded Crust 1 Inch From Edge. Top With Cran-Raisins And Almond Slivers. Place the brie in the center of the pastry circle. Fold two sides over the brie. Then fold the remaining 2 sides over the first two. Blot any leakage from the pocket off the outside crust. Decorate by placing a basket weave of criss crossed pastry strips over the top and baste with beaten egg. Place folded side down onto the parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes until golden brown. Let sit about 10 minutes before cutting. Serve with apple slices and crackers.
SAUSAGE AND DRESSING STUFFED PUFF PASTRY
1 pound sage sausage
1 medium onion diced
1 cup dressing
1 egg beaten
Cut 1 inch strips on both sides toward the center fold line of the sheet. Leaving a 3 inch strip in the middle.
Lightly brown the sausage mushrooms and onion in a medium-high skillet. Remove from skilled and Fold in dressing until blended. Place down the center of the pastry and criss cross the cut strips over the mixture. Baste with egg over the top and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes until brown. Slice in 2 inch strips and serve.
SPICY CHICKEN PUFFS
2 Cups of Roasted Chicken Diced
1/2 Cup Coconut Milk
2 Leeks Sliced thin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 cup Roasted Red Pepper diced
1 egg beaten
Cut pastry sheet into 9 squares. In a skillet on medium-high heat place 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil and add sliced leeks, ginger, curry powder and peppers. Cook until leeks are translucent. Fold in diced chicken until blended. Pour in coconut milk and simmer for about 3 minutes. Place a heaping teaspoonful of mixture into the pastry squares until used up. Wet the edges of the pastry. Fold each corner to the center over the mixture and pinch into pockets. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees until the crust is brown.
1 Egg Beaten
1 Pastry Sheet
1 Cup Parmesan Cheese Grated
3 Tablespoons Fresh Basil
1 Teaspoon Herb De Provence
Pinch Of Sea Salt
Roll pastry out to 10×14 and cut in half. Baste one side with egg mixture to cover entire sheet. Sprinkle cheese, herbs and a sprinkle of sea salt over mixture. Place second half of pastry sheet over the top of the first one and baste with egg mixture. Cut into ½ inch strips and twist and place onto baking sheet.