Eggs….for breakfast (or lunch, or dinner)

To continue with a few more ideas for breakfast and lunch, may we consider the egg. The egg is so versatile. It  can be eaten alone, incorporated into numerous dishes, or in some cases, even as a garnish. People eat eggs for breakfast, lunch, brunch, and dinner. Basically anytime of the day is a perfect time for consuming eggs.

But not every egg is created equally! I remember the first time I cracked open an egg someone gave me from one of the villages on the Greek island where we stay during the summer. I had never, in my entire life, seen a yolk so deeply orange. I then knew why many Europeans referred to the yolk of the egg, as the red of the egg! Made me stop and think why most of the eggs available to me at the grocery store back home looked sickly in comparison. Could it possibly be that a majority of eggs sold in the United States come from factory farms, where the chickens laying them are living in terrible conditions and not able to forage the earth for grass and bugs like nature intended?? Hmmmmm……

I have found some very good eggs at my local farmer’s market, as well as the co-op, where I order my goat milk. But honestly, not even every container of “organic eggs” will be that great. There are, sadly, many legal loop holes that farmers use to obtain the “organic” or “free-roaming” label, even though their chickens are still, for the most part, cooped up in gigantic warehouse-like barns. I recently came across, The Cornucopia Institute’s website, which rates eggs, allowing consumers to see which producers received the highest scores in their egg-laying operations. I found it, as well as the site’s video’s, very informative.

http://www.cornucopia.org/2010/09/organic-egg-report-and-scorecard/

So, once you’ve armed yourself with knowledge, and a few good eggs, it’s time to cook. For breakfast, I usually prefer scrambled eggs, but there’s also the hard egg, or soft-boiled egg, which is lovely with a few slices of dipping toast. My son is a huge fan of the hard-boiled egg, which is great, simply because you can cook a few in advance and store them in the fridge. Hard-boiled eggs are also a great option for packed lunches. If your child is too small to peel the shell, just peel it for him, and include a little container of salt. (Unless your child doesn’t like a small pinch of salt on his egg!)

For lunch, I love to make egg salad.  Simply boil about 6 eggs. Make sure not to put the heat too high, particularly if the eggs are cold. Bring them to a slow boil; cook for 4-5 minutes; then shut the heat off and allow the eggs to continue cooking in the hot water. This technique will prevent your eggs from cracking. Once the eggs have been cooked and peeled, smash them into small pieces with a fork. Add some mayonnaise, about 1-1 1/2 large spoonfuls; some finely chopped dill; 1 tsp. Dijon mustard; and sprinkle with salt and pepper to your liking. I have tried to make the egg salad into sandwiches with two slices of bread, but I find it’s best consumed open-faced, or even, just dipped into with some good crackers.

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