18 February 2012

How to Freeze Eggs and Other Handy Hints

Pamela posted a question in the Member forum about using frozen eggs, the whole eggs in her fridge had frozen solid.

Eggs freeze quite well, especially if you can get them to freeze in their shells, although it's not the tried and true method (the shells usually burst). 

Freezing eggs is a great way of storing them for future use, especially if you find them marked down and stock up. They keep well in the fridge for a very long time, but for safety and organization freezing them is the way to go.

Before I explain how to freeze eggs, do you know how to tell if an egg is fresh? Other than cracking it and getting a whiff of "off" egg that is?

To test the freshness of an egg simply place it in a deep bowl of cold water. If the egg stays at the bottom of the bowl, it is fresh. If it stands on end or floats, it is an older egg and care must be taken when using it (crack it into a separate dish to check for freshness before adding it to a cake mix etc, there's no point in ruining a whole recipe for the sake of a simple 20 second test).

Fresh eggs stay at the bottom of the bowl because they don't have a lot of air in them. Egg shells are porous and so as the egg ages it absorbs more air. As air is absorbed into the shell the  air at the bigger end of the egg expands, allowing the egg to stand or even float in the water. Fresh eggs have less air and more moisture and so don't float.

Keep your eggs in the carton in the fridge for optimal storage conditions and time.

Now to freeze eggs. It's a simple process. You will need small, airtight containers or large ice cube trays and a supply of ziplock bags.

To freeze whole eggs:

Crack into a small container, prick the yolk with a clean toothpick. This stops the yolk exploding as it freezes. Seal and freeze.

To freeze whole eggs in ice cube trays, crack each egg into one cube (this is why you need the larger ice cube trays). Freeze. Once the eggs are frozen, remove them from the ice cube trays and seal in ziplock bags.

To freeze whole, beaten eggs:

Crack two eggs into a bowl and beat lightly with a fork. Pour into a sealable, airtight container, label as holding two eggs and freeze.

Whole eggs can be frozen like this for up to six months.

Sometimes after baking you will have either yolks or whites left over. You can store egg yolks in a glass, covered with water for up to a week in the fridge. They are great for making sauces or to add to a custard and of course can be used to make lemon butter or a lemon pudding.

To freeze egg yolks:

To freeze egg yolks they must be beaten and have some salt and sugar added. This is because egg yolks on their own don't freeze very well and turn to a jelly-like mush once they are thawed.

Again beat two or four eggs together with a pinch of salt and either 1 (for two eggs) or 2 (for four eggs) teaspoons of sugar.  Pour into an airtight container or a ziplock bag. Label with the contents and the date and freeze for up to six months. To thaw simply remove from the freezer and let the yolks thaw in the fridge. These yolks are best used in baking. 

To freeze egg whites:

To freeze egg whites simply beat them with a pinch of salt and pour into airtight containers or ice cube trays. Once they are frozen, take them out of the ice cube trays and store them in ziplock bags (labelled of course).

I find the most efficient number of eggs to freeze is two. Most recipes call for two eggs (or multiples of two) so I know how many containers or bags I need to thaw when I'm baking. 

Frozen eggs are also great for scrambled eggs or omelettes to, just pull out the number you need (I use two per person), let them thaw and cook them the way you prefer.

I will say though that I don't like eggs fried or poached after they've been frozen, I find they tend to be a little rubbery. But then again it could just be my cooking :)

And there you have it - easy ways to freeze eggs.  I hope you find lots of eggs marked down very soon, or that your chickens have a laying frenzy, so you'll have lots of very versatile eggs in your freezer stockpile.

I know the title says "and Other Handy Hints" but I think this post is long enough. I'll save the other handy hints for another time.

1 comment:

  1. Great guide to freeze eggs! Fantastic help, because fresh eggs fresh eggs are not suitable for freeze, they lost texture and flavour. Same for mayonnaise http://bit.ly/ypqBRB


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