Greens, Strawberries and Perfectly-Cooked Eggs

April 18, 2011

I started hoarding eggs for Easter last week. With hard-cooked eggs, whether dyed or au naturel, older is better. I’ve learned the hard way that even week-old homestead eggs can be too fresh for easy peeling. So I’ve found that eggs need to be about two weeks old to peel most easily.

I can gather eggs from my girls, of course, but if you’re buying them from the store, I recommend that you get your eggs as soon as possible.

While everyone longs for every hard-boiled egg to peel perfectly, it doesn’t always happen. Don’t despair of those less-than-perfect eggs. Here’s a wonderful salad recipe from my book that I recently taught in a class (recipe below) that includes eggs, and imperfections will not lessen the fabulous mix of flavors and colors. Plus, I’ve included tips for perfect hard-cooked eggs.

I don’t know if there’s a correlation or if it’s just coincidence, but now that I need lots of eggs, the girls have taken to laying fewer. I have no idea why, although I have my suspicions. They’re so happy being outside and eating “shoots and leaves” that they’ve stopped eating their formulated chicken feed, which contains all the proper nutrients. I think they’re getting a few too many treats, and it’s throwing off their diet.

I guess I can’t blame them. My diet’s being thrown off a bit too, but that’s mostly due to the chocolate Easter eggs hiding in the cupboard……..shhh.


Also, Roxanne is molting and shedding her feathers yet again, leaving a fluffy trail as she walks through the emerging green grass. So, naturally, she’s taking a spring break and acting all crabby about it as she does. Cleo and Ruby are doing their best for the most part, laying an average of five to six eggs a week. Coco, however, seems to be spending some of her time preening and strutting her stuff for any upcoming Easter Parade. She would probably look sensational in a bonnet, don’t you think?

Tossed Greens with Strawberries, Avocado, and Farm-Fresh Eggs

The sweetness of spring strawberries is complemented by the balsamic-maple dressing and highlighted by the softly-cooked five-minute eggs.

Print This Recipe

Salad:

4 eggs
5 cups slightly packed mixed greens
1 avocado, sliced
1 1/2 cups quartered strawberries

Balsamic-Maple Dressing:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh chives
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon honey mustard

Arrange the eggs in a single layer in a small saucepan and add enough hot tap water to just cover the top of the eggs.  Cook over medium-high heat until the water just begins to boil.  When you see the first bubbles appear, immediately lower the heat to medium-low or low and cook 5 minutes at a gentle boil.  Remove the eggs with slotted spoon and place in a bowl of ice water until cool.  Peel and cut crosswise into 6 slices.  The egg whites should be firm yet tender and the yolks should be soft but not runny.

Meanwhile, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.

To serve, toss the greens in a large bowl with enough of the dressing to lightly coat the leaves.  Pile the greens on four individual serving plates and top with the sliced avocado.  Place the egg slices in the center of the greens and arrange clusters of strawberries around the edges.  Sprinkle the salads with a healthy dose of freshly ground pepper and pass the remaining dressing.

Serves 4

Tips for Perfect Hard-Cooked Eggs:

1. Barely cover eggs with hot tap water
2. Bring to the start of a boil over medium-high to high heat
3. Immediately turn down heat to medium or medium-low
4. Cook eggs at a lazy boil (eggs should not bounce, rattle or roll!) (basically a heavy simmer)
5. Cook for 9 minutes NO MORE (less for softly cooked eggs such as the 5 minute eggs above)
6. Immediately plunge into ice water
7. When cool, peel under running water.

 

2 Responses to “Greens, Strawberries and Perfectly-Cooked Eggs”

  1. April 19, 2011 at 12:28 pm, Betsy said:

    That bowl of eggs is beautiful, Janice! Are those au naturel?

    Reply

    • April 19, 2011 at 12:55 pm, admin said:

      Yes, that’s the way they come from the chickens. Amazing isn’t it?

      Reply

Leave a Reply