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ExpatSingapore Message Board 17 April 2014, 6:30:58 AM *
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Author Topic: Black spots in eggs?  (Read 7566 times)
k
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« on: 10 August 2009, 14:45:51 PM »
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  I cracked open a fresh egg at the weekend and it had two small black spots near the bit where yolk is attached to the shell. The spots were about half as wide in diameter as the eraser on the end of a pencil. I threw it away just in case. But does anyone know what causes this and if the eggs are safe? They were black, not the blood spots you get on occasion.
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« on: 10 August 2009, 14:45:51 PM »
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g.alert
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« Reply #1 on: 10 August 2009, 19:48:21 PM »
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They're called 'meat spots' and can be brown or black.  It tends to happen more with older hens and in brown eggs.  The spot is caused by a bit of body tissue, possibly a piece of broken off follicle that once held a yolk.  They are generally considered safe although the larger ones, like the ones in your egg, are generally picked up by quality control when the egg is candled (held up to a light for a quick inspection of the insides) because of their unappetising appearance.

Bet you're sorry you asked  Cheesy
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k
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« Reply #2 on: 11 August 2009, 12:29:57 PM »
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 Thanks for that, I think. Yech. Btw, I was watching Saturday Cooks and Anthony Worrall Thomson said always use fresh eggs for poaching, older ones just don't stay together.
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fritjes
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« Reply #3 on: 12 August 2009, 1:00:52 AM »
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Older eggs =/= eggs from older hens....
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g.alert
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« Reply #4 on: 12 August 2009, 10:20:27 AM »
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Older eggs meaning eggs that have been out of said hen for longer.

You can tell when you crack them open; fresher eggs have a white that looks like a firm gel and stays together, older than a week or so and the whites liquify making poaching very tricky.
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g.alert
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« Reply #5 on: 13 August 2009, 13:04:57 PM »
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On the topic of poaching, I read this article when I first started trying to perfect the art of egg poaching and it made me laugh a lot.

http://www.b3ta.com/features/howtopoachanegg/

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k
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« Reply #6 on: 13 August 2009, 13:36:28 PM »
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 Great. I'll have to try the clingfilm bit. Nothing says comfort food like a poached egg on toast, esp if you can find a good rye bread. I've also seen TV chefs do it by taking two slotted spoons and continually wrapping the stringy bits around the core of the egg as it poaches. It looks pretty finicky and you couldn't do more than 1 or 2 at a time, but it does prevent that roadkill jellyfish look.
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g.alert
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« Reply #7 on: 13 August 2009, 20:42:36 PM »
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I'm strictly a vortex girl but I'd like to know if the clingfilm really works.  I worry that it will taste plasticky (yes, I know I am a princess).  Report back if you give it a go.   
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marriedguy
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« Reply #8 on: 13 August 2009, 21:26:50 PM »
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I'm strictly a vortex girl but I'd like to know if the clingfilm really works.  I worry that it will taste plasticky (yes, I know I am a princess).  Report back if you give it a go.   

Forget the plastic mate.

Put a cap or two of vinegar in the water.

Don't use salt at it thins the whites.

Use fresh eggs.

When you drop the egg into the water (carefully, and as close to the surface of the simmering water as possible) make sure you put the egg where the water is simmering so as it will not drop to the bottom and stick to the pan.

Some use an egg ring and drop the egg into that to help keep the whites together. I don't.

Practice makes purrrfect!!!!
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Mrs Sparkles
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« Reply #9 on: 13 August 2009, 21:51:08 PM »
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I've reached a new summit of geekiness, having recently acquired a copy of "On Food and Cooking". (geeky, if you don't already have a copy, put it on your Christmas list - I reckon you'll be similarly enamoured)

I have learned four interesting things about eggs:
  • The reason the whites get thinner is that carbon dioxide in the egg (stored as carbonic acid) is lost through the pores in the shell. This causes pH to rise and the proteins repel each other rather than clustering as they do in a fresh egg.
  • The yolks tend to break in older eggs because they have a higher solute content than the whites. Osmosis does its work, water enters the yolk from the white and the resultant increase in volume stretches the yolk membrane, weakening it.
  • The floating test for eggs is based on the moisture loss of stored eggs causing the air cell to expand. More air in the egg makes it more buoyant and it will eventually float. (The larger air cell also makes it difficult to make boiled eggs with centred yolks!)
  • Candling isn't considered perfect (I read that USDA definitions allow a proportion of "below grade" eggs per carton) - which could explain how some eggs with black spots could make it to market

I'm not a big poached egg fan these days. I ate plenty of them when I was in my mid-teens, cooked in perfect dome shapes in a special egg poaching pan with plastic cups supported in a metal tray. Recently I've seen green silicone pods that seem to offer a similar cooking method (without the tray). Anyone tried them? Do they have any other uses or are they a single-purpose gadget?
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marriedguy
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« Reply #10 on: 13 August 2009, 22:00:07 PM »
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I had a mate in the NAVY who used to use non stick cake trays (12 cakes to a tray type) with the curved concave recesses. He would slip it into a large pan and crack the eggs into the recesses. He got good results!

However, his recipe for lemon meringue pie using half puff pastry, lemon gatorade thickened with cornflour and pavlova magic mix for a rock hard meringe top was not a hit amongst the troops!!!
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