Pickled Eggs

After rescuing 2 additional hens, now that they have settled in, they have become regular layers. In fact they both lay everyday now without fail. Some days, out of the 5 hens that we have that could be laying at the moment (so excluding the mother hen with 2 chicks) we actually get 5 eggs. Most weeks we are now getting +25 eggs, so I have been looking at methods of preserving the eggs.

One of these methods has been pickled eggs.  It isn’t something I have had in the past, never really being that curious about pickled anything tbh.  But I thought it time to look at my options.  Freezing the eggs is an option, deshelled of course.  Investigation in to this matter suggests that you either separate the yolk from the whites and freeze them in batch numbers you would use, or that you lightly scramble them so that they are thoroughly combined but without any air bubbles in them.  However, a distinct lack of freezer space until we get a deep freeze means that this is only really a viable option in very small numbers as a test method.  One reason for doing this is that during our winter, the girls will most likely stop laying and our egg supply run out.  Plus it will help me deal with a surplus of eggs.

And with that I have been trying out pickled egg recipes.  I have tried 3 so far, and all 3 have been OK but they have lacked flavour and not really been that ‘pickled’ to be honest, so I am modifying them, next time I make up some fresh pickling solution that is.  I can’t see why, after less than a week, I need to make fresh pickling solution for new eggs.  We have eaten the eggs that were in the pickle solution so why do I need fresh?  And so with that, I have adapted a few recipes and conducted some eggsperiments (sorry).

First time around, I did 18 eggs.  This second time around I have added another 12 eggs to the old pickling solution and will know in a few days time as to the outcome.

The first is Beetroot Pickled Eggs which turns the eggs purple.  Great fun and wonderful to look at and you get some pickled beetroot as well!

Beetroot Pickled Eggs

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs (uncooked)
  • 1 uncooked beetroot, chopped into 1cm cubes
  • 250ml beetroot cooking water (or more apple cider vinegar)
  • 250ml apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 onion, sliced thinly
  • 65g light brown sugar
  • 3-6 green cardamom pods
  • 1-2 star anise

Method

  1. Boil the beetroot for around 30-40 minutes in as little amount of water as possible. Retain the water and allow the beetroot to cool slightly.
  2. Whilst the beetroot is cooking, steam the eggs for around 20 minutes, before placing in cold water and allowing to go cold.  (Steaming reduces the chances of the egg shells cracking during the cooking process btw.)
  3. Next, peel the hard boiled eggs and place them in the bottom of an airtight jar. If you can’t get all 6 eggs in one jar, go for 2 and add a few more beetroot pieces or more apple cider vinegar if needed.
  4. In a saucepan, add the apple cider vinegar, beetroot juice (if using), onion and sugar with the cardamon pods and the star anise. Bring to the boil and simmer for around 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
  5. Put the mixture through a sieve (optional).
  6. Pour the apple cider vinegar mixture over the eggs. (Adding some of the beetroot pieces and onion slices pushing them in between the eggs will help enhance both the colour and flavour and also give you some pickled beetroot and onion in the process. I also added the cooked spices as well because we like them.)
  7. Ensure that the eggs are covered completely. If not, add some more apple cider vinegar to the jar to ensure they are and mix carefully.
  8. Now simply seal the jar(s), place the eggs in the fridge once cold and leave for at least a couple of days, ideally a week for the colour and flavour to penetrate the eggs.

If you don’t have access to raw beetroot, you can use pickled or canned beetroot instead and simply omit step 1, retaining any liquid for use.

Next came Curried Pickled Eggs.  And very nice indeed they were.

Curried Pickled Eggs

Ingredients

  • 6 uncooked eggs
  • 425 – 500 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 onion, sliced thinly
  • 65g light brown sugar
  • 3-6 green cardamom pods
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds (yellow or brown)
  • ½ tsp tumeric
  • 2 tbsp curry powder (make this a nice one)

Method

  1. Steam the eggs for around 20 minutes, before placing in cold water and allowing to go cold.
  2. Meanwhile, add the apple cider vinegar, onion, sugar, cardamon pods, mustard seeds and curry powder into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer for around 5 minutes before removing from the heat and allowing to cool slightly.
  3. Now peel the hard boiled eggs and place them in the bottom of an airtight jar. If you can’t get all 6 eggs in one jar, go for 2 and use more apple cider vinegar if needed.
  4. Put the mixture through a sieve (optional) if you don’t want the spices or onions to end up in the jar with the eggs – personally we kept them.
  5. Pour the apple cider vinegar mixture over the eggs.
  6. Ensure that the eggs are covered completely. If not, add some more apple cider vinegar to the jar to ensure they are and mix carefully.
  7. Now simply seal the jar(s), place the eggs in the fridge once cold and leave for at least a couple of days, ideally a week for the colour and flavour to penetrate the eggs.

The final one, I haven’t named yet, but has all the flavours of my favourite Indian Curry dish (homemade of course!).

Ingredients

  • 6 uncooked eggs
  • 425 – 500 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 onion, sliced thinly
  • 65g light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds (yellow, brown or both)
  • ½ tsp tumeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsps. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp hot chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp noble paprika (sweet paprika)

The method is exactly the same as for the Curried Pickled Eggs and they pretty much come out the same colour.  I have also been investigating a herbed pickled eggs recipe and I will let you know how that turns out in the New Year.

3 thoughts on “Pickled Eggs”

  1. To get a good pickled flavour, you may need a different type of vinegar. Pickling vinegar is stronger than other types of vinegar. When I used to pickle beetroot, I tried recycling the vinegar and it definitely changes the intensity of flavour when reused. The first pickling is ok, but the process sucks excess water from the beetroots, thereby diluting the acidity of the vinegar. Then my second pickling had a solution that was too weak to get a decent flavour. It also made me wonder whether the weaker acidity was going to make an adequate preservative. I have never done pickled eggs and the curried eggs look great for a salad. Yumm!

    1. The other eggs (assuming you meant hard boiled here and not the ones mother chook was sitting on?) were eaten by me for lunch… yummy…

      I shall have to look for the pickling vinegar tomorrow when I go into Woolies (supermarket). I haven’t noticed it so far but you never know.

      I’m working on another blog post for the chooks and chicks. Both chicks are still alive and doing really well. Mum brought them out into the garden when they were just 10 days old which scared the living daylights out of me but I have to trust her. They are thriving. She caught them a lizard the other day and made them share it! The chaos that created was amazing because 2 of the other chooks tried to get in on the act. One, I am convinced mum sees as a surrogate chick (although at 10 months and been laying for ages now she fully grown, but totally accepted as a chick – mum will let her take food out of her beak!) The other is a food bully and working her way up the pecking order and mum was having none of it at all from her! The food bully is very much a “you can do the work of finding it and digging it up/killing it and I’ll eat it, thank you’ chook. Very lazy indeed.

      I shall see if I can get the post about them and some new photos of them done of the next few days.

      Emma

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