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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Always look for a salmon that is firm to the touch, but bounces back if you press the flesh. The cut shouldn't have any liquid pooling around it and the meat should also be translucent and moist.
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Next: How to Store Salmon
Salmon can be stored in its original packaging for up to two days. For optimal freshness, unwrap the salmon, gently pat it dry, and wrap the filet tightly in plastic wrap. Fish like salmon usually fare best at the bottom of the refrigerator.
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Next: How to Freeze Salmon
It is important to capture as much moisture as possible. Wet the salmon, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and wrap again with aluminum foil. Place the filets in a freezer bag and keep away from the door to ensure a consistent temperature. If the salmon has been previously frozen, do not re-freeze.
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The “Feed Your People” cookbook is full of meals perfect for big, happy groups, and this French-inspired feast contributed by Georgeanne Brennan is a great example. She’s owned a house in Provence for years, where every summer, the entire town hosts a grand aioli, a celebration that ends with a feast featuring the area’s famous garlic aioli in huge quantities. It’s served with simply prepared steamed vegetables, hard boiled eggs, and salt cod, and is a party comprised of hundreds of people. This smaller-scale version stars a roasted side of salmon (a nod to the author’s home base near the Pacific in California), but otherwise keeps to tradition—there’s also an abundance of fresh beets, green beans, and new potatoes, and a great bowl of luscious aioli to dip everything in. Add some fresh bread and plenty of rosé and you have a crowd-pleasing meal perfect for eating outside when the weather is fine, a true celebration of summer, seafood, and good company.
Variations: You can use whatever vegetables are in season and look best, including cherry tomatoes, radishes, sugar snap peas, artichokes, sliced raw fennel, or blanched cauliflower.
Notes: Aioli calls for only a few ingredients and can “break” (or separate, rather than emulsify into a smooth substance) if not whipped properly. The key to getting it to set up is patience, and good arm strength. If your mayonnaise breaks, you may be adding the oil too quickly. Make sure to drip it into the egg yolks slowly, in a steady series of drips more than an actual pour—and feel free to call on a friend to help; one person can whip while the other drips. After all, it is a communal meal. However, if you’re pressed for time, you can make it in a food processor (see the recipe for instructions). Either way, combining olive oil with grapeseed oil (or another neutral oil) makes for a lighter-flavored aioli; if you have a very strongly flavored olive oil, you may want to replace up to half or more of the total amount called for with a neutral oil to lighten the taste.
Make Ahead: Georgeanne makes this simple meal the day of serving so everything retains its freshness, but the vegetables can be prepped a day in advance and then cooked the day of the party. The vegetables and salmon should be cooked no more than 1 hour in advance of serving. Cover them to keep them moist and bright looking. The aioli can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 4 hours. If you need guidance on boiling eggs, check out our Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs recipe.
Serving: A grand aioli is best when served on a long table with the food down the middle in multiple mismatched bowls and platters. Allow one bowl of aioli and a platter of vegetables for every four or five guests. French bread and glasses of rosé round out the meal.
If you’re looking for something a little more suited to a weeknight dinner, try our Slow Cooker Poached Salmon, our Salmon and Asparagus Kebabs, or browse our other easy salmon recipes.