Water glassing is a traditional preservation method for fresh farm eggs for a more extended period. In the 1800s but is water glassing eggs safe?
Chicken keepers used sodium silicate glassing solution. At present days, calcium hydroxide is what preserves fresh farm eggs.
Most people opt to use the natural calcium hydroxide, called pickling lime. Besides, pickling lime is also less sticky. Note that there are various types of lime.
The best type for storing the eggs is food-grade lime, available in stores. Furthermore, you can buy pickling lime online.
If you’re a poultry enthusiast and still thinking about the best method of storing fresh farm eggs, you’re in the right place.
Our article has a complete guide about everything you need to know about the water glassing of the eggs. Keep reading!
Eggs that are water glassed are generally safe for consumption. But, before you eat the eggs, wash them thoroughly because ingesting pickling lime is unhealthy.
Further, when breaking the eggs, ensure no single crack is mixed with the egg as it may contaminate the whole egg.
You can use glassed water eggs the same way you can use eggs from the coop, except if you’re boiling your eggs where you will make a small hole in the shell to prevent exploding when hard-boiling the eggs.
If you think you’ll need to eat eggs later in the week, you can take enough from the Food-grade bucket and store it in a refrigerator for a few days.
Reasons For Preserving Eggs
If you’re a chicken keeper, you should be able to understand the egg-laying cycles of your chicken.
For instance, during winter, chickens respond naturally to the season’s change due to the reduced daylight hours.
It leads to a reduction in the production rate of the eggs. Also, some chickens might not lay eggs completely, depending on your location.
For the few chickens that lay eggs during the winter season, they are put in artificial daylight to aid high natural egg production.
What Eggs Can Be Water Glassed?
All poultry eggs can be preserved using the water glassing method. However, the eggs must be clean and fresh.
Note that it is important not to wash the eggs to keep them clean. Again, avoid buying the eggs from stores and use them for glass washing; store eggs are always passed. Washing damages the egg’s bloom coating.
Eggshells have a lot of pores. The outer layer that coats the eggs’ bloom prevents the entry of bacteria and air into the eggs.
Therefore, washing eggs will allow access to pickling lime into the egg when preserving them using water glassing. A mixture of water and lime seals the pores, making eggs ready for storage.
What Do You Need For Water Glassing Eggs?
- Food-grade bucket. The size of the bucket will depend on the number of eggs you wish to preserve.
- Calcium Hydroxide is commonly known as pickling lime.
- Water-free from chlorine and fluorine. We recommend using either distilled water or natural spring water. Also, you can boil water with fluoride components to keep it free.
- Fresh, clean, and unwashed eggs.
You do not need to put all your eggs in a food-grade bucket once; you can add the eggs as you collect them.
Water Glassing Eggs Process
- Food grade bucket
- Kitchen scale for measuring Pickling Lime
- Pickling Lime
- Natural or distilled water– free from chlorine and fluorine
- Clean, fresh, and unwashed eggs
- Mix the water and pickling lime with a ratio of 1-quart water to 1 ounce of lime. You’ll need to ensure that the solution covers the eggs by 2 inches.
- Gently add the eggs placing the pointy side down while the fat side up in the lime-water solution. We point eggs down because there’s an air pocket in each egg, so if you have it going toward the largest size, it’s not touching as much of the egg white, and you’ll end up with a better quality egg. Be cautious because if one egg cracks, the entire batch gets destroyed.
- Put a tight lid on the Food-grade bucket, then store the glassed water eggs. Keep the bucket in a cool and dark place until you need some farm-fresh eggs. Putting a lid and storing it in a cool dark place is to prevent evaporation. If your container doesn’t have a lid, you could add a layer of olive oil over the top of the water, then cover with a towel to keep any bugs or insects out.
How Long Do Water Glassed Eggs Last?
The glassed water eggs can last up to a year or even more. When pickling lime seals the pores of the eggshell, it keeps the eggs very fresh, just like they’re laid.
Fresh eggs with a bloom still intact can be stored for about one month and refrigerator for up to six months.
What To Do If There Is a Cracked Egg in Your Water Glassed Eggs
First, think about how long the eggs might have been broken. When an egg cracks while either adding or taking it out, you can take care of the remaining ones.
However, if the cracked egg has stayed in the bucket for a month, the water will produce a pungent smell and be cloudy. You’ll carefully remove all the eggs, discard the cracked ones and add fresh lime water.
After about 2-3 days, check the bucket for the smell. If the bucket is smelly, the egg cracked long ago and contaminated the entire batch.
Therefore, the eggs are no longer safe for consumption. On the other hand, if the bucket and eggs smell fine, you’re generally good to go.
Again, it will be a good idea to move the batch aside so that you can scrutinize it. This is easy; you’ll be sure if the eggs are safe for consumption. It’s better to be safe than sorry. On matters of food, always clear any doubts.
How Do Water Glassed Eggs Taste?
If you correctly follow the preservation process, take the eggs out, rinse well before using, the eggs will taste fine, just like the fresh ones from the coop.
Many people think the water-glassed eggs taste more like store-bought eggs. Note that glassed water eggs might be watery if they stay longer in the lime water, but it is less than frozen eggs.
However, the flavor is not affected at all. When you mishandle the eggs, they might lose flavor, where the bloom is damaged or taken off.
We recommend that you always watch out and be gentle when handling the eggs in whatever preservation stage. In the end, you will need to eat safe food. Use your eyes and nose, and save your eggs!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the settling of the lime normal?
The solution of lime to water is heavier than necessary. Therefore, settling is perfectly normal for the lime at the bottom of your container, and there’s no need to stir it. It shouldn’t worry you!
How is it safe to eat if it’s not good for my skin?
It is not good to eat lime. Washing the eggs before using them is necessary. For that reason, you should preserve eggs that are fresh, clean and have never been washed before.
The fresh eggs have a natural bloom coating layer that keeps the lime solution from entering the egg.
Should I work with protective gears when handling lime water?
Yes, the lime solution is a high ph and can dry out your hands, primarily for people with sensitive skin; please wear gloves.
When purchasing lime, you’ll see precautions all over; take a few of your minutes to read through the warnings.
You might be suing lime on a much smaller scale, but it is essential to take precautionary measures to avoid inhaling the powder. It is hazardous and might create complications for your body, affecting your health.
When is the best time to preserve eggs?
There is no definite time to preserve eggs. Whenever you have fresh eggs, you can store them. Mostly, a growing family tends to preserve the eggs that they can consume a day or any time of the week.
Sometimes, when egg production is high, farmers get two dozen per day and choose to preserve extra eggs.
How can I know if the eggs are as good as fresh eggs when I use them after several months?
You can use the most ordinary and straightforward egg float experiment to tell whether an egg is fresh. You place the egg in a jar of water – if the egg sinks and settles at the bottom of the jar, it is fresh.
However, if the egg is suspended in the middle or stands up but still submerged, it is not fresh but still good to eat. If the eggs completely float, it is no longer suitable for consumption. Discard it!
Remember to dispose of the eggs carefully and in the right place. The egg has a pungent smell that you can bare it to some extent.
If you have been asking yourself whether or not water glassing is safe, now you are answered. This ancient method of preserving eggs is safe and can be used to preserve any eggs. The eggs should be clean, fresh, and unwashed.