The incredible, edible, egg. I eat a few everyday. Yep, yolk and all. After so many years of being scrutinized by the diet Nazi’s as being one of the culprits of high cholesterol ( right around the time margarine was also popular ) eggs are making a comeback. Not only are they not going to cause your cholesterol to sky rocket, but they are a great protein rich food to start your day with. Its time to run out and get yourself some eggs. But first, here are some things to look for before purchasing.
Look out for key words….these key words include:
Cage Free – Cage free has no legal definition… cage free basically means that they are probably in a hen house sans cage, yet still crowded together and stuffed like sardines.
Free Range- Free range also has no legal definition. They are basically your “cage free” chickens with “access” to the outdoors. “Access” means the over crowded hen house has a door that is left open. However, chickens are not the brightest of animals…and don’t venture out much. If their food is inside, that is where they are going to stay.
Vegetarian Fed- Did you know that Chickens are not vegetarians? Yep, when they are actually free to roam they will eat insects, worms, etc. Nothing makes my blood boil more than seeing a carton of eggs that says “Free range 100% vegetarian fed”. The only way that you can assure that a chicken is 100% vegetarian fed is if they are kept contained somewhere with no real access to the outdoors. Also 100% vegetarian fed, means 100% chance it was fed some form of soy.
Natural- This term means absolutely nothing. The only thing it means is that the unknowing customer will spend an extra buck because they think they are buying something that is at least a step up from conventional. Wrong.
Omega 3 fortified- This term means that the chickens were usually fed a diet of flax seed or some other type of dietary supplement. The omega 3’s may be a bit higher in these eggs but omega 3 fortified doesn’t mean the chickens were raised outdoors in green pastures and open spaces.
Organic-This means the chickens are given organic feed, and no antibiotics, and they may or may not have access to the outdoors
So what kind of eggs should you buy? Your best bet is to buy your eggs from the farmers market, whole foods, or other gourmet/natural food store. Look for real pastured eggs. Ones that were free to roam, and not fed a “vegetarian diet”. You will probably find that pastured eggs tend to be more expensive so if you can’t afford the extra dollar, I would recommend at the very least going with organic…or you could skip that morning Starbucks which costs the same as a dozen pastured eggs, make your coffee at home, and stop making the “but its too expensive” excuse. Yep that’s right, I said it.
For now, I will leave you with a little lesson on omelet making…or perhaps how to not make an omelet… courtesy of none other than the drunken Hannah Hart. Warning: This video contains explicit language…which is hilarious but not recommended for children or those allergic to cursing.