( Originally Published Early 1900's )
1. EGGS-How to Preserve Them, Pour Plans. — Whatever excludes the air prevents the decay of the egg. What I have found to be the most successful method of doing so, is to place a small quantity of salt butter in the palm of the left hand and turn the egg around in it, so that every pore of the shell is closed; then dry a sufficient quantity of bran in an oven (be sure you have the bran well dried). Then pack them with the small ends down in a layer of bran and another of eggs until your box is full; then place in a cold, dry place. If done when newly-laid, they will retain the sweet milk and curd of a new laid egg for at least 8 or 10 months. Any oil will do, but salt butter never becomes rancid, and a very small quantity of butter will do a very large ,quantity of eggs. To insure freshness, I rub them when gathered in from the nests; then pack when there is a sufficient quantity.—E. Alexander.
2. Eggs, to Keep from September to May.-This receipt is from Mrs. Wm. Church, who says: " The best way she finds is to take a pot or pail, or anything convenient, put about an inch or two of bran of any kind—I generally take shorts from flour—being a farmer's wife I generally have it on hand-in it, put a layer of eggs, either end down, close together; then cover with meal, another layer of eggs, and so on until the box is full, occasionally giving it a shake to fill well between the eggs. This plan I have adopted for years with success, and the last when used —which is often the last of April and the beginning of May—are as good as the first. I commence to pack in September.. The whole secret lies in carefully selecting fresh eggs, packing on end and keeping the air from them. Keep in a dry, cool place."
3. Eggs, to Keep from September to April, as Good as Fresh.—This is from J. B., Strathnairn„ who says," I take a tub of any size and put a layer of common salt about an inch deep in the bottom; then grease the eggs with butter (of course salted butter), and place them in the salt with the small end down, so that they will not touch the wood of the tub near each other; then fill the vacancies with salt, and cover them again about an inch deep as before; then place another layer of eggs as before; then salt alternately till the tub is filled; then cover the top' with salt, and put them where they will not freeze. I have kept eggs in this manner from September until April as. good as fresh. The grease on the Shell keeps the Salt from penetrating, thereby keeping the eggs fresh, while the saving qualities, of the salt keep them from becoming putrid. This recipe is both cheap and good, as the salt can be fed to cattle afterward.
4. Eggs—To Keep Two Years Perfectly Good.—This is from. Emily Audinwood, Stanstead Plainss P. Q,: "I have tried, several experiments, but find none to answer so well as the following: I have kept eggs for two years, and found them perfectly good when used. Two pounds of coarse salt bailed-10 minutes in 1 gal: of rain Water; pour off into an earthen jar. When, nearly cool, 'stir in. 5 table-spoonfuls of quick lime; let it stand till next day; their put in the eggs and keep them tightly covered until wanted for use."
Remarks.—I formerly understood " quick lime " to signify slacked lime, '-but it is more generally conceded to mean unslacked, which has been powdered so it can be measured, about three times the strength of slacked, as by slacking it increases nearly, if: not quite, this much in bulk. To be certain of having good lime, I should always obtain it unslacked and slack it only when I was, ready to use it. The above, and the next item, I have quoted as reported in the Free Press, of London, Ont. It was sent to me by my oldest daughter, Mrs. Dr. Mills, who lives there, and knowing they must be valuable I give them. The Free Press closed by saying:
5. Eggs-To' Keep Nine Months.—"Wright, in his poultry book, recommends the following method for preserving eggs: To 4 gals. of boiling water add 1/2 a peek of new lime, stirring it some little time. When cold, remove any hard lumps there may be with a sieve, add 10 ozs. of salt, 3 ozs. of cream of tartar, and mix thoroughly. The mixture should stand a fortnight. before using. The eggs to be packed as closely as possible, and to be closely-covered up. If put in when new laid, he says they will keep nine months."
Remarks.—This is something of the character of the old English patented recipe, except in that it recommends the mixture to stand a fortnight (two weeks) before using, which will temper it nicely, as the plasterer says of his mortar. Were it not that Mr. Wright says " remove any hard lumps," etc., I should suppose he meant slacked lime, but this would have no lumps in it which need be put in, hence he, too, means "quick," or unslacked lime, which is pretty certain to have lumps, and which, if left in, is liable to break the eggs that might settle upon them, if not removed.
6. Eggs, Preserving Six Months, Equal to Fresh.—A writer in the English Mechanic says: "In the year 1871-2, I preserved eggs so perfectly that after six months they were mistaken when brought to the table for fresh laid eggs, and I believe they would have kept equally good for a twelve-month. My mode of preservation was to varnish the eggs as soon after they were laid as possible with a thin coat of varnish, taking care that the whole of the shell was covered with the varnish. I afterwards found that by painting the eggs with fresh albumen (whites of eggs), beaten up with a little salt, they were preserved equally well, and for a long period. After varnishing with albumen I lay the eggs on soft blotting-paper, as I found that when allowed to rest till dry upon the table the albumen or varnish stuck so fast to the table as to take a chip out of the shell. This is entirely prevented by the use of the blotting-paper. I pack the eggs in dry bran."
7. The following is from a lady writer who does not boil salt, as in No. 4, nor cream of tartar, as in No. 5. I can see no special advantages from the cream of tartar, only to make it look a little more formidable to obtain a patent upon in England, where first obtained some 75 years ago. She does not give her name, but says:
8. Eggs, To Preserve Two Years.—To each patent pail (the common wooden pail), add 1 pt. freshly slacked lime and 1 pt. of common salt; mix well. Fill your barrel half full with fluid of this strength; put your eggs down in it any time after June, and they will keep two years if desired.
9. Eggs, To Keep all the Year—Never Failing.—Put perfectly fresh eggs into a net, willow or wire basket, and hold them in boiling-water while you count 20; then pack in jars, little end down, in dry salt, and keep from frost Put up in the fall for winter use.—Mrs. Tillie Wales, Detroit, Mich.
Remarks.—The author is well acquainted with this lady, and knows her . to be practical and reliable. An Iowa lady pursues the same plan, except that she dissolves sugar in the water and packs them in charcoal and bran, as follows:
10. Eggs, To Preserve.--Select perfectly fresh eggs (this must always be done, as old eggs or those exposed to heat or cold can not be preserved), put them, a dozen or more, into a small basket and dip for 5 seconds (20, as above, I consider not too long a time,) into boiling water, having 5 lbs. of sugar to. 1 gal. of water. Next place them immediately on trays to dry. The scalding water causes the formation of a thin skin of albumen next the inner surface of the shell, the sugar effectually closing the pores of the latter. The cold eggs are then packed, small end down, in a mixture of 1 part charcoal finely powdered and 2 parts of dry bran. Eggs so treated have been found perfectly fresh and unaltered after six months.—Mrs. A. Noyes, Volga County, Iowa, in Blade.
11. Egg Preservatives, from Experiments at the Agricultural College of Iowa.-Eggs packed in dry, pulverized charcoal at the college, June 25th, were all bad November 20th. Eggs packed in finely pulverized gypsum in June were good in December. Eggs kept in a refrigerator at 54 degrees remained fresh and sweet from July to November, seeming to prove that unaided cold air is a good preservative.
Remarks.—Thus, it seems that dry gypsum (plaster of Paris), is an excellent preservative. I should expect it would so prove for it is, when dried in a kettle over the fire, a very fine powder, perfectly excluding the air, and if kept in a cool place no 'evaporation of the moisture of the eggs would escape.
12. Eggs packed in boxes or barrels in dry oats, little end down, and the covers nailed if boxes are used, and headed up if barrels are used, then the boxes or barrels turned bottom up every week or 10 days, has proved successful; and the eggs were ready for shipment. Salt has been used in the same way, and the plaster of Paris might be, except from its being so fine it will run out of very small cracks or holes.
13. Preserving Eggs Two Years, The Swiss Plan. Plan. Sace, of Switzerland, reports having kept eggs two years by the following method. He says: " Cover the eggs—fresh ones—with a coat of paraffine, 2 lbs., 3 ozs., avoirdupois, to 3,000 eggs. They do not lose weight or freshness. Has kept them two years. Stops the pores, but if not fresh and decomposition has commenced, it does not stop it—Druggists' Circular.
Remarks.—I have seen a report in some of the papers that this plan failed; but I honestly believe that it was not the fault of the plan, but from not having fresh eggs; because it not only fills the pores, but moisture can not go out through the coat of paraffine. Still, some of the other methods may be equally good; for family use, the boiling in sugar water of No. 10, or the gyp-sum (plaster of Paris) of No. 11, would be less trouble, packing away and keeping cool, as in a refrigerator or cold room, also mentioned in No. 11. Any of these plans properly done will not fail.
14. Eggs—To Determine the Sex of—Tested.—In "Navin's Work on Poultry" he gives a test made by A. T. Newell, of Philadelphia, Pa., who says: " Pullet eggs, or those which will produce pullets, are smooth on the ends; while those which produce the roosters have a zig-zag mark or quirl on one end. In selecting 200 for roosters, only 1 produced a pullet; and out of 50 for pullets he got 50 pullets."
Remarks.—See " Positive Remedy for Hog Cholera" for further knowledge of Navin's reliability. I have no doubt of the facts stated in that, as well as in this case.