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Eggs for Easter: 5 mistakes we make often
Eggs for Easter: 5 mistakes we make often

There Easter low speed approaches at high speed. And you are already starting to think about the Sunday lunch menu and what to put on the grill Easter Monday.

For all, or almost all (in short, excluding our vegan friends), an ingredient cannot be missing: the egg, which are the symbol of Easter and which, gastronomically speaking, go very well with many seasonal ingredients.

From asparagus to new vegetables to lamb with cheese and ova or in a fricassee with eggs and lemon.

Are you sure you know how to choose and use them? In case you need a refresher, here are 5 mistakes that are often made

1. Use any eggs


Such a simple ingredient, especially if used in purity or almost, must be of quality. If you can cheat a little when the yolks and egg whites end up in the dough for desserts and cakes, from fresh pasta onwards, excellence can make the difference between a dish, a good dish and an excellent dish.

I will not encourage you to buy at all costs (what cost is the right word!) The white eggs of Paolo Parisi or the cute forest egg from hens that scratch and nest in a chestnut wood of Valtellina, in these weeks covered with snow.

But, good heavens, at least at Easter avoid the first discount price and go to a farmers' market, if you have it close to home, or at least orient yourself on the organic of your reference supermarket.

Paying especially attention to freshness. Not only, or not so much, for reasons of hygiene, but because for the success of many recipes, one above all that of poached eggs, freshness is an essential condition.

2. Not knowing when they are fresh


But, exactly, when is an egg fresh? Let's do a little review of the legislation.

The extra-fresh egg is the one put on sale within 9 days of laying.

It stays fresh for 28 days, but after 21 it must be withdrawn from the market. Therefore, you shouldn't be able to find eggs with 7-day expiration (or more than 21 days old from the laying date) for sale.

The deposition date and / or expiration date must be indicated on the package and / or on the egg.

Together with the "infamous" alphanumeric code which, if it begins with 0, indicates the organic egg mentioned above.

3. Ignore the times

Hard-boiled eggs, different cooking times
Hard-boiled eggs, different cooking times

Once you have chosen the best egg there is, you will not want to waste it with rascal cooking.

Start with the assumption that it is a delicate food and that the more it cooks, the more it takes on an unpleasant and chewy consistency.

This is the case with certain omelettes, in which the problem can be aggravated by having beaten the mixture for too long, and with scrambled products forgotten on the stove.

By the way: for most cooking, the heat should never be violent. I also cook the omelette initially over moderate heat, raising it just before turning it to brown the outside: this generally guarantees me that it remains soft but well cooked inside, and not burnt on the outside.

Just as it should be, to give another example, the perfect omelette which in the center is "baveuse", as the French say.

That said, let's review (also on behalf of chef Antonino Cannavacciuolo) the times of the basic preparations:

- the soft-boiled egg, at room temperature and initially placed in cold water, cooks in 3 minutes from boiling, 4 for those who want a more cooked egg white;

- the barzotto egg, in the same way, is ready in a range of time ranging from 4 and a half to 5 and a half minutes;

- hard-boiled egg, as above but for 8 minutes: the longer this time is extended, the more unsightly dark ring will form around the yolk;

- the poached egg cooks in 3 minutes, the bull's-eye one in about 4 (incidentally, in this case you dare a lively flame, so that the sizzling butter takes on a nice hazelnut color).

4. Don't be creative

scrambled eggs
scrambled eggs

In the 1970s and 1980s, creativity in eggs focused on hard-boiled ones, adorned with plastic tufts of pastel-colored fillings or veiled by mirrors of chemical gelatin.

Between the nineties and the 2000s, after the soft-boiled eggs popped and stuffed with bread sticks, strips of salmon, asparagus tips or other eggs (read: caviar), the time has come for the yolk only: cleared through the French meat tartare., it is first finished at the heart of open ravioloni and closed pasta bundles, only to be sublimated by complicated marinades and finally to drift, raw and disturbing, on carbonare of dubious taste.

In recent years, people often drown and serve them Benedict with Hollandaise sauce in any self-respecting brunch, with or without seasonal vegetables.

Finally, the time has come to move away from classic expressions to recover interesting foreign and even exotic recipes.

They range from Scottish Egg, hard-boiled eggs (or, better, barzotte, to find the yolk still soft), wrapped in a mixture of meat or sausage, breaded and fried, to the Shakshuka of Jewish cuisine, a rich tomato and pepper sauce in which our shells and cooks in a sort of poached bull's-eye.

To try, Jing Bing, the Chinese crepes (also tasted at the Ravioleria Sarpi of the Milanese Chinatown) on which a raw egg is spread, before various fillings of vegetables, meat and spicy sauces. But also, again to stay in China, the simpler eggs in tea. Which remind me of pickeld eggs, hard-boiled and marinated with spices and aromas, of Anglo-Saxon inspiration.

Not knowing who to give the rest to

eggs and pan
eggs and pan

If, like me, in view of the Easter menus you buy eggs by the dozen and then you have some leftovers, you could be quite calm given the long life of these products (see point 2).

However, for reasons I don't know (are you going on vacation? Are you starting a strict diet?) You may find yourself needing to keep them. I recently discovered that they can be frozen with pretty good results.

Of course, the eggs must be shelled. You can freeze egg yolks only, egg whites only or whole eggs. In all cases, they need to be lightly beaten.

Whole egg yolks and eggs (which contain them) must be stabilized, otherwise after defrosting they turn out to be grainy and pasty. To do this, mix 1 teaspoon of salt to every 250 ml of mixture (if you intend to use eggs for omelettes, fillings and the like), or sugar or honey (for sweet recipes).

Once the mixture has been prepared, you should portion it into ready-to-use containers: one of 120 ml will correspond to about 2 whole eggs, 6-7 yolks, about 3 egg whites.

Another thing I learned: you can keep poached eggs for a whole day. When cooked, dip them in water and ice, then drain and place them in a closed container, on kitchen paper, and put them in the fridge. To revive them, simply immerse them in water at 60 ° for 15-20 minutes.

Voila, the egg is served.

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