Anatomy of an Egg

| 12/10/2012 3:23:46 PM

row of eggs 
  • The color of an egg's shell is dictated by a hen's breed and genes. A hen lays the same color egg her whole life. 
  • The color of the yolk is dictated by a hen's diet. Foods containing xanthophyll such as corn, marigolds and alfalfa help make egg yolks a vibrant orange color.
  • The white of a fresh egg will be thick and viscous.  As the egg ages, the white will start to get runny and thin.
  • The white strings in some eggs are the chalazae. They appear most often in fresh eggs and anchor the yolk in the center of the white. 
  • The number on a carton of eggs indicates the date the egg was packaged (i.e. the 306 on the carton in the photograph means the egg on the left above was put in the carton on November 1st - the 306th day of the year - compare that to our farm fresh egg on the right laid this morning!)
  • A blood spot in an egg does not indicate fertility. It is merely a bit of broken blood vessel, possibly from rough handling of the egg or jarring while the egg was being laid.
  • A white 'bulls eye' on the yolk does indicate fertility.

  • An egg should not be washed until just before using it, to preserve the natural 'bloom' that keeps out air and bacteria.
  • Eggs don't need to be refrigerated, but will last roughly seven times longer in the fridge than out on the counter.
  • A hen's diet won't affect the taste of an egg specifically - i.e. adding garlic to their feed won't result in garlic-flavored eggs - but eggs from hens who eat healthy, varied diets will be more flavorful.
  • An egg contains 13 essential vitamins and minerals, protein, unsaturated fats, lutein and plenty of antioxidants.
  • 75-85% of an egg is water.
  • There are approximately 70 calories in one egg.
  • Eggs are a wonderful source of Omega-3. You can increase the Omega-3 levels in eggs by adding flax seed to your chickens' daily diet .  
Read more HERE about how an egg shell gets its color and which breeds lay colored eggs.
Read more HERE about naturally supplementing your daily layer feed for more nutritious eggs and healthier hens.
Read more HERE about handling and washing eggs.
Read more HERE about how to tell how fresh an egg is.

Join me on Facebook and my Blog at Fresh Eggs Daily for more tips, tricks and advice to raising happy, healthy hens as naturally as possible!  

 Source for selected information:
12/11/2012 4:36:24 AM

Lisa, all good information about the make up of an egg but I just like to eat them. I'm not picky about how they are cooked .... or not cooked. Now I just don't slug them down like "Rocky Balboa" but can slurp down a cup of eggnog quite nicely. In my humble opinion, eggs are one of the perfect foods .... well almost. A couple slices of bacon will finish out the perfect breakfast. Have a great egg day.

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