Chickens, Keeping Chickens

Got Muddy Eggs?

Eggs are laid with a shiny coating, kind of like a dried layer of egg white, called “bloom”, which keeps them fresh on your counter for weeks, as long as you don’t wash them. In other parts of the world, eggs aren’t washed before they are sold, so can be safely stored at room temperature. But if the bloom gets wet, it dissolves, and no longer protects the egg.

In the US, eggs sold in stores are washed, so they need to be refrigerated. During dry Sacramento summers, our eggs are usually pretty clean. Sometimes our eggs sit on the counter for a couple days before I sort and refrigerate them. (If they don’t get cooked and eaten by the teenagers before then.) This winter, we desperately need rain, and I’m grateful it is finally here, but it also means muddy, mucky eggs. The rule in our house is always wash the eggs right before use. But I don’t love leaving so much yucky dirt on them until then.

I’ve tried wiping the dirt off with a dry cloth or paper towel, scrubbing with a dish brush, or a tooth brush. Nothing has really worked. If the eggs are too gross, I’ll wash them. But I’d like to scrub most of the dirt off without getting the eggs wet and losing the bloom.

Today I tried a stainless steel sponge scrubber, and guess what? It worked! It scrubbed away almost all of the dried mud, but it left the shiny bloom intact. The sponges sell in grocery stores or on Amazon for about $3. I finished off stubborn any spots with a short wire grill brush, also about $3.

You can see the results in the photos below – shiny eggs with no more muck.

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