Dec. 19, 2018

Around the World with Eggs

President's Blog
Margaret Hudson
President, Burnbrae Farms
4th Generation Farmer

Confessions of an egg farmer: one of the reasons I love to travel is to see how eggs are used in global cuisine! From Africa to France to India, eggs are a staple of diets and can be used in so many versatile and delicious ways.

In my adventures abroad, I’ve eaten eggs prepared many ways – for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and in beverages. One of my most memorable egg experiences was on my trip to China where I was introduced to the “thousand-year egg” which is an egg that is preserved in clay, ash, salt, quicklime and rice hulls. It’s a brooding, blackish egg that I was a bit sceptical about trying.

So today, I thought it might be fun to take a little tour around the culinary world to get inspired to try new egg recipes.

Mexico: Have you tried Huevos Rancheros ? These “ranchers’ eggs” are a hearty Mexican breakfast featuring sunny-side-up eggs on fried tortillas, covered with salsa and served with  refried beans on the side. You can fancy-it-up by adding diced tomatoes, lettuce, avocado and cilantro. It’s so hardy, you could eat it for lunch or dinner, as well!

Middle East/North Africa: There are many variations of Shakshuka based on the specific region, and it’s popular in Israel, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya and Algeria. The concept is the same: eggs are poached in a spicy, rich stew of tomatoes, peppers and onions seasoned with cumin, coriander, garlic and paprika. Scrumptious with crusty bread any time of day.

Japan: Ever had a Japanese savoury pancake? Known as Okonomiyaki , the batter is made of eggs and flour, and then ingredients such as cabbage, onion, vegetables, pork, seafood or cheese are added. It’s really a cross between a pancake and an omelette. Some people even refer to it as Japanese pizza.

United Kingdom: Invented in the 19 th century, Scotch Eggs are a common picnic and snack food in the UK. They consist of a hard or soft-boiled egg wrapped sausage meat that is then breaded and deep-fried or baked. You can often find them on the menus of gastropubs across Canada or make them at home!

France: It’s hard to pick just one egg dish that stands out in this culinary-gifted country. The omelette and the soufflé are French creations, and are enjoyed everywhere. Soft and creamy eggs en cocottes (eggs in pots) are baked in individual ramekins and topped with fresh herbs. The famous Croque Monsieur is a an elevated grilled ham and cheese sandwich featuring ham, gruyere cheese and Dijon. Put a fried egg on top of that grilled ham and cheese and you hae the Croque Madame. Yes please!

United States: If you love French toast, you’ll definitely love America’s take on the Croque Monsieur – the Monte Cristo sandwich. It’s a ham and cheese sandwich that is dipped in beaten egg and fried in butter. What a decadent treat.

Peru: The Pisco Sour is a South American classic. The drink’s name comes from “pisco” which is the liquor base for this drink and “sour” which comes from lime juice. But the truly surprising ingredient in this drink is egg whites. If you’re nervous about the raw egg whites, use our Naturegg Simply Egg Whites which are pasteurized and safe to consume raw.

Italy: In addition to a plethora of yummy egg-rich pasta dishes, Italy also features eggs in another unique place – on pizza. The Florentine Pizza has a tangy tomato sauce, sautéed spinach, ham and mozzarella. Then, about two-thirds of the way through cooking, you crack an egg onto the middle of the pizza and bake until the egg is just set.

Why are eggs so commonplace in all of these diverse countries? They are affordable and nutritious, which is a winning combination no matter where you live! Hopefully you’ve been inspired by one of these global dishes and will try something new with eggs soon.

Margaret Hudson

President, Burnbrae Farms