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Stowing eggs for longevity


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What is the issue?
Eggs are both fragile and perishable. Their paper cartons often play host to cockroaches and thereby introduce cockroaches aboard a vessel.

Why address this?
Eggs are an excellent food provision for a yacht. They are a highly versatile base product to contribute to many dishes and having a long life span before they degrade in storage. Looking after the vessels stock of eggs and making it last longer will make for a happy ship.

How to address this?
Use a packing carton as shown in figure 1 to protect the eggs and extend their life, and buy eggs that are fresh and have not been refrigerated.

Eggs go off when they oxidise i.e. air penetrates the protective shell. Hence the simplest test to check the condition of an egg is to place it in fresh water. If the egg sinks it is good; if it floats it has oxidised and needs to be discarded. Refrigerating the eggs shortens their lifespan once they subsequently stored in an ambient temperature.

There are two measures to delay oxidisation and extend the life of the eggs. The first is to cover the eggs in Vaseline that adds another protective coat to prevent oxidisation. The second is to regularly turn the eggs so they do not sit and weigh down in one position. The carrier case completely simplifies turning eggs, as with the egg-case presented in figure 1, a single flip will turn fifteen eggs.

We found turning eggs met all our extended life requirements during our circumnavigation. Eggs are broadly available in most ports so they were easy to replenish. The lifespan achieved by simply turning the eggs addressed our requirements and we did not need to coat them in Vaseline.

A back up to eggs is egg powder which is broadly available. However this should be considered a convenient back-up as there is no substitute for the taste of fresh eggs in cooking.


With thanks to:
Michael Harpur, Yacht Obsession.



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