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We’ve just seen the back of the chocolate eggs for the year, but we feel it’s time to celebrate the genuine article! At the moment, we’re munching through 1.2trillion eggs each and every year and they definitely need to be celebrated. Not only are they great for their incredible versatility, but also because they help keep you fuller for longer and reduce that temptation to snack.
One note of caution at the moment, and something we’ve noticed in the last few weeks, is that there are a lot of pop up fruit and veg sellers sharing their wares on local Facebook groups, and that’s fantastic. But, when it comes to selling eggs they’re not especially forthcoming on whether the eggs are free-range or organic or whether they’re ethically sourced at all. While it’s great supporting local businesses, it’s always worth asking your new supplier what you’re actually getting or if you can asking your local farmshop to arrange a delivery or collection for you – you can find yours here.
It wouldn’t be a real food week without some fantastic facts, so here are some of our egg-citing facts:
– The Chinese consume forty per cent of the world’s eggs.
– An egg shell is made of calcium carbonate, making up 9-12 percent of an egg’s total weight, and contains pores that allow oxygen in and carbon dioxide and moisture out.
– An egg white is mainly of protein and contains about 57 percent of an egg’s protein.
– The colour of an egg yolk is determined by hen’s diet. The more yellow and orange plant pigments there are in the grain fed to a hen, the more vibrant the colour of the yolk will be. (a happy chicken will also lay a brighter orange yolk)
– The other colours within an egg vary with its age and other factors. Egg whites that are cloudy indicate that the egg is very fresh, clear egg whites indicate an egg is ageing; pink or iridescent egg whites indicate spoilage, and these eggs should not be consumed.
– The average hen lays between 250 and 270 eggs a year but some lay more than 300.
– According to research published in 2008, male dinosaurs were sometimes responsible for sitting on eggs until they hatched.
– The world record for eating hard-boiled eggs is 65 in 6min 40sec.
– The colour of an eggshell is purely dependent on the breed of the hen.
– When an egg hatchets the chick assumes the first big animal it sees is its mother.
If you’d like to establish your own home supply of eggs, then keeping chickens can be really rewarding. They can be brilliant pets and we can highly recommend them. Not only are they an easy sell to your children – you only need to explain that they’re the nearest living relative to T-Rex – but they are very amusing to watch and can be great pets, even though they’re not that cuddly.
Our founder, Anthony, had a chicken that used to climb the stairs to his office every day and sit on the chair next to him marvelling at him working away. Unfortunately, despite numerous warnings, she eventually got taken by a fox (the risk of complete free range), but she had a much better life that the average battery hen.
Chickens are also a fantastic way to help children understand where our food comes from, and we firmly believe every school should have some. Preferably in an allotment so you can all learn about fruit and veg.
For the freshest real free range eggs head to your local farm shop on the BigBarn local food map. You might even find someone to sell you some hens.
Or if you have a favourite egg recipe, or any other recipe, and would like the chance to win a prize, please video your recipe and add it to KIS (Keep it Simple) Cookery. Please have a look at existing videos here and try and keep your video less than 2 minutes long.