News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

Easter eggs are perfect for making easy dishes after the holiday

Linn County Master Gardener

Easter egg hunts are fun for kids of all ages. But it’s not fun to be sick from eating unsafe eggs that have been contaminated with harmful
bacteria like Salmonella or e.coli. 

Start with clean, uncracked eggs that have been refrigerated since washing. Hard-cooked eggs peel easier if the eggs have been refrigerated for seven to ten days before cooking. This gives time for the two membranes inside the shell to separate. 

Eggs laid within a week of cooking are more difficult to peel. Cook the eggs and keep them in the refrigerator until ready to color.

The recipe for perfect hard-boiled eggs can be found at Foodhero.org on your phone or computer browser. 

Place a single layer of eggs in a saucepan and cover with an inch of tap water. Bring the water to a full bubbling boil. Take the pan off the heat and cover with a lid or plate.

Let the eggs sit in the hot water nine minutes for medium-sized eggs, 12 minutes for large eggs, or 15 minutes for extra large eggs. Drain the hot water off and cool the eggs completely in cold water. 

Refrigerate within two hours of cooking to reduce the risk of food-borne illness. Refrigerate eggs in the shell safely for up to a week. 

Refrigerate colored eggs in the original carton or a covered container until time to hide them. Discard cracked eggs or keep them for eating at home. 

If the egg hunt is outside avoid placing eggs in areas where pets or other animals have been, or where chemicals have been used on lawns. Do not eat eggs that have been at temperatures above 40 degrees F for more than two or three hours.

For easy peeling, roll a hard-cooked egg on the counter until it has lots of little cracks. Start at the large end where the air pocket should be. Peeling under running cold water helps to loosen the shell from the egg white. Use peeled eggs within two days because they have lost their natural protective package. 

Enjoy egg-salad, avocado-egg  or tuna-egg sandwiches, deviled eggs, chopped or sliced eggs on salads, eggs in pasta dishes, potato salad, curried eggs, sliced eggs with asparagus and bacon, Scotch eggs, or simply a cold egg snack. 

How many ways can hard-boiled eggs be used? How long will the kids eat them before memories of the fun fade and Easter eggs have lost their appeal?

Simple and nutritious recipes for pickled eggs are found at the National Center for Home Food Preservation . 

Each recipe uses 12 peeled, hard-cooked eggs packed loosely into a clean quart container that can be closed tightly, like a quart canning jar. 

For colorful red beet pickled eggs boil together 1 cup red beet juice from canned beets, 1 ½ cups cider vinegar and a few slices of beets and simmer for five minutes. 

Pour the hot pickling solution over the eggs, completely covering them in the jar. Cover and refrigerate immediately. 

Medium or large eggs may take two to four weeks to absorb the flavor and color. 

Keep pickled eggs in the refrigerator and use withing four months for best quality. 

Other pickled egg recipes at NCHFP are sweet and sour, dark and spicy, cidered, dilled, and pineapple pickled eggs. A tasty way to extend the useful life of large quantities of hard-cooked eggs. The recipes can also be acquired from the county Extension office in Salem or Tangent.

To learn more about food safety, download a free copy of publication PNW0250 You Can Prevent Foodborne Illness at https://extension.oregonstate.edu/. 

For kid-tested egg recipes search the ingredient list at OSU’s https://foodhero.org/ . 

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