There is definitely an etiquette and an art to passing along your restaurant leftovers to the homeless, as this Table Manners piece from last fall and its fascinating comments thread proves. Replate, an organization dedicated to spreading the concept of giving unfinished meals to the homeless, suggests leaving your containers (marked with a Replate sticker, of course, so the recipient knows it’s edible food) atop, rather than inside of, urban garbage cans.

Now two NYC sisters have come up with a novel way to add a little bit of love to the leftovers. Their idea, Egg in a Box, encourages those who order Chinese takeaway to do something kind with the inevitable extra steamed rice: tuck a hard-cooked egg inside the box and pass it along to the hungry.

Jonathan of the blog Wasted Food interviewed Egg-in-a-Boxers Molly and Anna about their philosophy and the nuts and bolts of this inexpensive but soul-satisfying way to extend goodwill and avoid wasting food at the same time.

Eggs, they note, have several things going for them that make them perfect for a project like this. According to Molly and Anna, “Eggs are quick to cook, and hard-boiling them is easy and relatively sanitary. We like the tastiness, nutritious value, and economical aspect of eggs, as well as the fact that eggs last a relatively long time (at least a month when boiled).”

There are directions on hard-boiling on the Egg in a Box site. Refer to them the next time you head out for Chinese.

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