Eggs should keep a consistent and low temperature. This is best achieved by placing their carton in the center of your fridge. The eggs should also remain in their original packaging to avoid the absorption of strong odors.
It is wise to follow the “best by” date to determine overall freshness, but eggs can be tested by simply dropping them into a bowl of water. Older eggs will float while fresh eggs will sink. This is due to the size of their air cells, which gradually increase over time.
Cooked eggs have a refrigerator shelf life of no more than four days, while hard-boiled eggs, peeled or unpeeled, are safe to consume up to one week after they’re prepared.
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The beauty of an egg is its versatility. Eggs can be cooked in a variety of ways. Here are some tips in accomplishing the four most common preparations.
Scrambled: Whip your eggs in a bowl. The consistency of your scrambled eggs is a personal preference, though it seems like the majority of breakfast connoisseurs enjoy a more runny and fluffy option. In this case, add about ¼ cup of milk for every four eggs. This will help to thin the mix. Feel free to also season with salt and pepper (or stir in cream cheese for added decadence). Grease a skillet with butter over medium heat and pour in the egg mixture. As the eggs begin to cook, begin to pull and fold the eggs with a spatula until it forms curds. Do not stir constantly. Once the egg is cooked to your liking, remove from heat and serve.
Hard-boiled: Fill a pot that covers your eggs by about two inches. Remove the eggs and bring the water to a boil. Once the water begins to boil, carefully drop in the eggs and leave them for 10-12 minutes. For easy peeling, give the eggs an immediate ice bath after the cooking time is completed. For soft-boiled eggs, follow the same process, but cut the cooking time in half.
Poached: Add a dash of vinegar to a pan filled with steadily simmering water. Crack eggs individually into a dish or small cup. With a spatula, create a gentle whirlpool in the pan. Slowly add the egg, whites first, into the water and allow to cook for three minutes. Remove the egg with a slotted spoon and immediately transfer to kitchen paper to drain the water.
Sunny Side Up/Over Easy/Medium/Hard: For each of these preparations, you are cracking an egg directly into a greased frying pan. For sunny side up, no flipping is involved. Simply allow the edges to fry until they’re golden brown. To achieve an over easy egg, flip a sunny side up egg and cook until a thin film appears over the yolk. The yolk should still be runny upon serving. An over medium egg is flipped, fried, and cooked longer until the yolk is still slightly runny. An over hard is cooked until the yolk is hard.
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Eggs can easily be frozen, but instructions vary based on the egg’s physical state. As a general rule, uncooked eggs in their shells should not be frozen. They must be cracked first and have their contents frozen.
Uncooked whole eggs: The eggs must be removed from their shells, blended, and poured into containers that can seal tightly.
Uncooked egg whites: The same process as whole eggs, but you can freeze whites in ice cube trays before transferring them to an airtight container. This speeds up the thawing process and can help with measuring.
Uncooked yolks: Egg yolks alone can turn extremely gelatinous if frozen. For use in savory dishes, add ⅛ teaspoon of salt per four egg yolks. Substitute the salt for sugar for use in sweet dishes and/or desserts.
Cooked eggs: Scrambled eggs are fine to freeze, but it is advised to not freeze cooked egg whites. They become too watery and rubbery if not mixed with the yolk.
Hard-boiled eggs: As mentioned above, it is best to not freeze hard-boiled eggs because cooked whites become watery and rubbery when frozen.
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Live crab (fresh meat) should not be stored in the fridge. They must be kept alive (typically in aerated water) until they are cleaned and cooked. Putting a crab in the fridge will kill them and you should never cook a dead crab. Cooked crab meat, if stored in an airtight container, can last three to five days refrigerated.
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Freezing cooked crab meat is quite easy. Simply store it in an airtight container or heavy-duty freezer bag. You can also wrap the meat tightly with foil or freezer wrap. Frozen crab meat will maintain its best quality for up to three months.
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Placing crab meat in the refrigerator is the safest and most effective way to thaw it. Because frozen crab is prone to dryness, be sure to substitute its loss of natural juices with a wet ingredient like mayonnaise.
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The perennially popular and rightly lauded Foreign Cinema is an enchanting restaurant in San Francisco. Chefs Gayle Pirie and John Clark recently released a cookbook so you can recreate some of the restaurant’s magic at home. This easy yet elegant frittata combines sweet Dungeness crab meat with mild fromage blanc (or ricotta) and tender potatoes in a fluffy egg cloud that makes a fabulous summer brunch, or even a simple supper for one or two. The method of cooking it on the stovetop to start, then moving it into the oven, helps achieve a perfect texture, and the bright tomato vinaigrette that accompanies it sets off the simultaneously rich and delicate flavors. Just add a few slices of ripe avocado and a light green salad to finish.
Game Plan: The recipe does call for 1/4 cup of roasted potatoes, so you can make some for dinner up to a few nights in advance and reserve that portion to use in the frittata. You’ll build the tomato vinaigrette from a simple homemade tomato sauce, most of which you’ll reserve for later use. Still, you’ll probably have some extra vinaigrette left over too. It’s great for dipping raw veggies, or even using as an alternative to ketchup with fries and onion rings.
Note: If you can’t find Dungeness crab, you can substitute Peekytoe crab or even cooked lobster.
Special Equipment: Since the pan will go from stovetop to oven, make sure it’s totally oven-safe; a well-seasoned cast iron skillet is a great choice.