Monday, January 21, 2008

Fresh Eggs

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Although we live on over 2 acres, there are difficulties that prevent me from raising chickens. First and foremost we're not zoned for livestock. But the beauty of living in a rural area is that there are plenty of people who raise livestock and run small entrepreneurial businesses. Not only are there quite a few egg farms, there are farmers who raise hormone free beef and hogs and produce milk from hormone free cows. If you don't have a freezer to store a side of beef you can split the purchase with a group of neighbors.

The farmer and I were both raised within spitting distance of the city of Chicago but always knew we belonged in the country. The farmer's grandparents were farming immigrants from Poland and my family (on both sides) had been farming in rural Tennesse and Florida for over 200 years. It makes me believe in a cultural memory gene.

The gene however, seems to have skipped a generation in my daughter's case. There are alot of eewwww's pronounced when I bring back fresh eggs from the egg farm. My daughter seems to believe that somehow the eggs from the grocery store have been imparted some special qualities between the producer and the refrigerated case in the store. I'm not quite sure what those qualities might be, but freshness is not among them. The eggs with expiration dates tatooed on them are especially precious to her.

Bad weather prevented me from my mission last week but when I approached on this sunny day I notice that they've probably had the driveway graded. Unlike many of the crumbling barns in the area their barn is very well maintained and it's a beauty. Unfortunately this small farm is directly in the path of the freight train known as development. Just across the highway a large housing development is being built.

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This sign points you in the direction of her egg shop which is in reality a small enclosed side porch off her kitchen. When you walk in you'll find a refrigerated case containing the eggs.

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Unfortunately there was someone getting into her car just as I was arriving and she had at least 6 dozen eggs in her possession! I was getting worried.

All the large eggs were gone but there were jumbo's, medium and cracked eggs available. The prices are as follows:
Jumbo - $2/dozen
Large - $1.75/dozen
Medium - $1.50/dozen
Cracked - $1.25/dozen

The jumbo eggs are huge. I purchase two dozen jumbo and 1 dozen medium. If a recipe calls for 2 large eggs I use one jumbo and one medium.

She leaves us notes:

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We leave her notes on our purchase:

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We put the money in the box. There's a separate small box that contains change in case you need it.

Here's the difference between the jumbo and the medium size.

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Here are the results of our trip to the egg farm. Three dozen fresh eggs displayed in a fabric nest!

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It's 10 degrees here this morning, without factoring in the wind chill. That's cold and perfect weather for baking buttermilk poundcake.


So.........tomorrow we'll do just that. We'll bake a buttermilk pound cake in a ridiculously expensive cake pan!

5 comments:

mountain said...

I know how you feel about fresh eggs.
We have hens on the farm and being able to pop across the courtyard to fetch eggs when we need them is a real luxury!

Mountain Dweller

Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

Now I am certain that those eggs are delicious and wonderful in every way, but they are white. Nope, I can't eat a white egg; they must be brown. LOL!

I enjoyed the excursion to the egg farm and a cold day is perfect for it, too. One of the things that used to offend my nose was visiting my former egg farm on a hot day.

Haven't started the tossing of pillows or the screaming, but it could come to that yet. Ha!

KatKit13 said...

I sooo miss the Anacounda (sp?) eggs my friend brought to me whenever she drove through here from Michigan. they were so good.

You've brought another memory from my Way back Machine to life... going down the road from my Grandmothers to the little egg shed, and getting eggs. Mmmm.

Tina said...

Eggs are beautiful...can't wait for the buttermilk poundcake, and I want to see this expensive cake pan!

Shannon said...

I see signs saying "Eggs for sale" all over the place where I live in NH. Now I'm inspired to go and buy from the local neighbors!

I can't wait to see the cake tomorrow.