Wednesday

[cooking] Six eggs

In an effort to use up eggs, I wanted to try salt-cured egg yolks. I've seen these pop up here and there on foodie blogs- and the recipes looks ridiculously easy: cover egg yolks with salt/sugar and wait. I can do that. 

I took six eggs and separated the yolks from the whites, one at a time, sliding the yolks into a spot on a mix of 75% salt and 25% sugar. The whites I would dump into a container for later use.

Salt-curing egg yolks. Will dig them out of the salt in 4 or 5 days.

Then I covered the yolks with more salt/sugar mix, closed the containers and put them into the back of the fridge. 

But what to do with six egg whites? I went with this recipe for chocolate pavlova. My only change was trying to plop out six individual sized pavlovas on a parchment sheet, rather than making one big one.

I don't know what I'm doing when it comes to meringue. I watched some videos and read some blogs- this one was particularly helpful. I got my meringue to the point of shiny, hold-the-bowl-upside-down stiffness, but... I don't think my sugar was incorporated well enough. I only use organic sugar which tents to have bigger grains and... I don't know, I could still see the sugar when I was portioning out the meringue onto the baking sheet. Which, when heated in the oven, I think caused the pavlovas to collapse and spread? My pavlovas were flat and chewy, rather than lofty and cake-y. 

I had one:

pavlova

pavlova

And unfortunately threw the rest away. The edges were good (and whipped cream + berries + shaved chocolate was the BEST way to enjoy this) but the center of the pavlova couldn't be cut with a fork. It was like... chocolate jerky. Disappoint. Maybe next time I should use superfine sugar? Or let the meringue mix for longer? Or bake at a different oven temp? Every recipe I found seemed to use a different temp, ranging from 150 F to 350 F. I think I did mine at 300 F. 

I guess I would be willing to try meringue again... since I know I'm going to be making cured egg yolks again! The yolks turned out excellent.

After 6 days, I took the containers out of the back of the fridge, gently dug out the gold disks of treasure and brushed off the salt/sugar. They had the consistency of soft gummy bears. I rinsed each under the faucet and patted dry with paper towel- at this point I could pull off any chalazae (those white stringy bits) that had stuck to the yolk when I first set them to cure. Then I put them onto a greased cooling rack to dehydrate in the oven at 150 F for two hours. When they cooled, they were fairly hard.

Salt cured egg yolks. After 6 days, dug them out of the salt, rinsed, finished dehydrating in the oven at 150 F for two hours. I suppose I should make some pasta now, to grate this over.

My desire is homemade pasta with sage browned butter and these yolks shaved over it... But I was feeling lazy, so I just shaved some over buttered corn-on-the-cob that we were having with dinner:

Grated yolk over corn on the cob. Fan-f'ing-tastic . These cured egg yolks are 💯

The yolk shavings didn't melt (I don't know why, but I thought that they would) and the corn didn't taste yolk-y. It just tasted extra good. The shavings themselves just taste... umami. The yolks are currently in a ziplock bag in the fridge and are easy to grab and grate when the urge strikes. Maybe... over mashed potatoes? Popcorn? Should I just motivate and make ton of pasta and freeze most of it so I can enjoy homemade pasta whenever? ... FINE. But I know we'll just end up eating pasta every night until it's gone.

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