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How do you tell if an egg is fresh or not?


The Best Before date on the carton is the best guide for freshness. Eggs can go bad early if they are not refrigerated properly in storage or in transit from farm to store. If you break an egg into a bowl and it has a bad appearance or the odour is offensive do not eat it.

The Best Before date shown on the carton is the best guide for freshness. Eggs can go bad early if they are not refrigerated properly in storage or in transit from farm to store. If you break an egg into a bowl and it has a bad appearance or the odour is offensive do not eat it.

It is important to note that eggs can have different odours based on the diet of the hen so this is not always an indication that an egg has gone bad, but when it is bad the smell is pretty distinctive and, well, rotten.

It is also possible to tell is an egg is fresh by the egg white (albumen). If you break an egg and it spreads all over the pan then it is not the very freshest that it could be because the bonds in the molecules have begun to break down.

Very fresh eggs perform better in baking than older eggs.

Eggs should not float. To test if an egg is fresh before breaking it, place egg in a full bowl of water. A fresh egg only has a small air cell in the bottom end (not the pointed end); if not fresh it will sink and lie on its side. As eggs age, air enters the porous shell so that old eggs have a larger air cell; the smaller pointed end will stay down in water but the bottom will tilt upward. These eggs are still safe to eat but best used for baking or should be hardboiled. Eggs that are going bad will form a little methane so the entire egg will float – these eggs should be discarded.

 


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