Sunday, March 31, 2013

Homemade Salted Duck and Chicken Eggs

Hello Everyone ! You may already know my love for Congee, nice thick smooth rice porridge that is really simple to make and always comforting to the body. 
There are so many ways to enjoy a bowl of hot congee. You can cook it with ingredients to flavor the porridge or have it simple with different types of side dishes like my quick minced meat and green stir fry, or ground turkey with minced watercress or kale. A nice scoop of piping hot congee in your bowl  topped off with the stir fry, a small drizzle of soy and fresh cilantro .... so good ! 
And sometimes a salted egg!

from ediblyasian
My earliest memories of these eggs was shopping with mom at the chinese markets. They would be in a large shiny black ceramic container like a large flower pot with a red cloth cover lid ( like those big wine containers in Kung Fu movies)

The container would be full of duck eggs covered with black mud or clay. 
The salting process is with a mud/clay mixture with loads of salt then add water to create a paste,
Cover each raw egg with a thick layer of the paste and add to the container, lined from bottom to top, sealed and stored in dark cool area until ready, weeks to months.
 I believe this method was the cheapest and best for transporting.
Mom would pick out a few, put into a brown paper bag , and then at home wash out the mud/clay completely before cooking. 
These days you will only find packed, precooked salted eggs at the Asian markets. I have tried a few of them, but they do not meet the quality I like. I found a place in Chinatown that sells fresh duck eggs, and that was when I realized I could make my own. 
This is my first try on making my own salted eggs.
The best part is the yolk. When the brining process is done well it will produce a golden yolk with a smooth grainy texture like a real good baked potato...with a pop of salty unami!

Golden oily semi salty yolk is what I want 

I experimented with duck and chicken eggs
4 duck eggs
4 chicken eggs
4 cups of water
1 cup of sea salt
4-5 tablesoon of Shao Hsing chinese cooking wine or sherry 

Prep and set :
1. Heat water and salt until all salt dissolved. Put aside and let cool completely.
2. Eggs - wash and dry - add in container carefully
3. Pour in the cooled brine and add the wine.

4. Add water to a small sandwich bag to weigh the eggs (the eggs will tend to float from the salt) then seal. the container.
5. Make a note of the dates/day of brining. 
6. Store in cool dark area for 30 - 40 days.
* you can place the jar  on a tray or plate to avoid the salty mess  when accessing to the eggs

cooking : add egg to cold water and bring to boil for 10 minutes

Should try the eggs to see if they are ready to your taste.
I tried an egg on the 25th day - not ready.
I tried an egg on the 30th day - not ready.
Perfect on the 40th day. 

Duck (top ) and Chicken (bottom) - Both result came out perfect! 
sorry for the poor slicing of the eggies
I am happy having these eggs chopped up and mixed in my bowl of congee, love it when the yolk semi melts in, flavoring the congee.

Storing : Clean all eggs from the brine and store in fridge separate from the fresh eggs.

** Cin mentioned a very famous Cantonese dish cooked with only the salted yolk - Stir Fried Lobster coated with salted yolk.
** Popular Filipino salad - tomato , onion with slices of salted eggs 
**  Mama -Steamed Mince pork and salty egg pie

Do you know any other salty egg dishes ??