Wednesday, November 17, 2010
I have hens in my backyard. My eggs are tasting funky. Any ideas?
Backyard eggs should taste no different from store bought eggs, although they should be more fresh and the whites should "stand up" more when the egg is broken. The shell color and yolk color (free-ranged chickens often have more colorful yolks) will not affect the taste.
So, a little detective work is in order. I would start with "What goes in, must come out" and investigate the food your hens consume. It is possible that foods fed to the hens could be affecting egg taste. Onions, garlic, and members of the Brassica family of vegetables (cabbage, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli) could be the culprit if fed in large quantities. Feeding table scraps? Chickens are omnivores, but large quantities of meat and fish are probably not natural. Try removing all kitchen and garden waste from your hens' diet. Does that change the taste? If not, try another brand of layer feed.
Secondly, make sure that the coop is clean and has fresh bedding. Eggs should be collected daily and refrigerated. Any cracked eggs should be discarded as bacteria can enter through the cracks. If the eggs are dirty when collected, brush them off, but do not wash them. Washing removes a protective coating on the eggs and they should not be washed until right before usage. Unwashed eggs can be stored without spoiling at room temperatures for up to two weeks.
If these measures don't improve egg taste, you might consider not allowing them to free range for a week to see if they are perhaps ingesting something in your yard that give them an off taste.
Most people find that backyard eggs, because of the freshness, are better for eating. The exception to this might be in making hard boiled eggs. Older eggs seem to peel more easily, while fresh eggs can be tough to peel.
Some people will tell you that your problem is eating something that comes from the butt of a chicken in the first place, but the same "some people" doesn't even eat lettuce so you have to take into account the source.
The horses were much more, shall we say, respectful when I called them to come in at 6 p.m. last evening. In fact, they were dancing in place like dressage horses. I cannot understand how deer can stand living outside in this type of weather, or any animal for that matter.
Finished reading Boys Adrift: The Five Factors Driving the Growing Epidemic of Unmotivated Boys and Underachieving Young Men. More on that later.
On my Kindle: Fall of Giants (The Century Trilogy) for me, The Railway Children for William
Guest Blog by Lauren Lauren wrote this essay for a class she is taking. I thought it was interesting and wanted to share with you. Copyrig...
Mass was about to start, so I turned down the volume on my iPhone and silenced it. I slid it into the handy pocket on my thigh of my new cap...
In a recent Smithonian Magazine article, it quotes author Vaclav Smil as saying that "two of every five humans on earth today would not...
The county where I live is a "bedroom" community, not just for people, but for horses. It is not unusual to see large horse traile...
The BBC news magazine reports that Paris Hilton wrote the following on her myspace.com blog: "Please help and sihn it." She is h...
As I watched her slide off the brass elephant, I recognized in her something of myself . Which of our parents gave us this propensity to be ...
If I had been the cashier, I would have lost my job. I would have told the old lady that I'd ring up her "Christmas gifts" ...
Before going back to more serious subjects, I wanted to share a story told by my sister about my beloved nephew/godson. He recently had a fr...
In my late twenties, I was the foreman of a synthetic detergent manufacturing plant, the first female to work in the building much less supe...
"I am going to be homeschooling my kindergartner. What curriculum should I use?" If only I had one day to have my little ones li...