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Thyme for Cooking: Eggs

Eggs, boiled: 

To hard-cook eggs the 'guaranteed easy to peel' way: Steam them for 16 minutes, covered, (after water boils), then cool in cold water for 3 minutes. They peel very easily every time.

To boil eggs the easy way: put the eggs in cold water, bring to a boil and boil for 10 minutes for hard cooked; 4 - 8 minutes for soft, depending on preference.

To boil eggs the easier way: put the eggs in cold water, bring to a boil, cover, remove from heat and ignore for at least 20 minutes or longer if you are busy, for hard cooked. 

Eggs, separating: 

The easiest, fastest and safest way to separate eggs is: first, wash your hands.  Crack the eggs and, holding the fingers of one hand just slightly apart, pour the egg through - the yolk stays in your fingers, the white slips through. 

To freeze the part of the egg you're not using:

Egg Yolks:  Put the yolks in a bowl and gently stir.  Add a pinch of salt, up to 1/4 tsp for 6 yolks.  They can be frozen in ice cube trays than transferred to freezer bags.  If you're going to use the yolks in desserts, add a pinch of sugar, up to 1 tsp for 6 yolks. You can use extra egg yolks in recipes like sauces, custards, scrambled eggs, and cooked puddings.

Egg Whites:  Raw egg whites freeze well, unlike cooked egg whites which turn watery and rubbery. No salt or sugar is needed.  Make sure that no yolk gets into the whites.  Pour into ice cube trays and freeze until firm.   Use up extra egg whites in boiled frostings (i.e., 7-minute frosting), meringue cookies, cakes or egg white omelets.

To store eggs:

In the U.S. eggs should be stored in the refrigerator.  Eggs are best used within 3 weeks.  Most now come with a date stamp. 
 An older egg will be easier to peel when hard-boiled. 
When fried or poached, the white of a fresher egg will run less and be thicker.  It will also whip better.

In Europe eggs do not have to be refrigerated (they are not washed before selling) but should be kept in a cool, dark place.

Egg Conversions: 

Based on a large (2-oz) egg.  Obviously sizes vary....  

Whole Eggs
3 whole eggs = 1/2 cup
1 whole egg = 3 tablespoons
1/2 whole egg = 4 teaspoons

Yolks
6-7 yolks = 1/2 cup
1 yolk = 1 tablespoon

Whites
4-6 whites = 1/2 cup
1 white = 2 tablespoons

Dried Eggs
1 egg = 2 tablespoons egg powder + 2-1/2 tablespoons water

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