Chickens and Eggs

Customers comment that the eggs at the CFM don’t look like those in the grocery store. This is a direct result of varieties of hens running around outside, foraging on the land out in the pasture grasses.

A few years ago, Pat Daly researched the types of hens laying for our market. Most of the hens belong to breeds recognized by the American Poultry Association. The recognized breeds include:

  • Ameraucana – developed from the Araucana and other breeds and recently recognized by the APA. This is the breed that lays the light blue eggs.
  • Araucana – a South American breed that also lays blue eggs.
  • Astralorp – an Australian breed that lays light brown eggs. An Astralorp hen laid 364 eggs in a 365 day period, a record.
  • White Leghorns – originally from Italy that lays white eggs.
  • Plymouth Rock – a very popular American original developed in New England in the mid nineteenth century that lays light brown eggs.
  • Rhode Island Red – another American original developed in Rhode Island and Massachusetts that lays darker, brown eggs. This breed is the state bird of Rhode Island.

Robert Hutchins of Rehoboth Ranch shared information on how to boil and peel these rich, golden yolk eggs while they are plentiful. Most cooks struggle with peeling a freshly laid boiled egg, ending up with bits and pieces of shell adhering to the egg white. The solution lies in both the boiling and peeling procedures.

Hutchins says, “Here are some tips that will make the job easy. First, put your eggs in a pan, cover them with water, sprinkle in some sea salt, turn on high heat. Second, when the water starts to boil, reduce heat to medium, and set the timer for 10 minutes.

Third, when done, immediately place eggs in ice water; add 1 tsp. baking soda (optional), keep the water icy cold until the eggs are cooled. Finally, lightly tap eggs on the counter to loosen up the shell and the inner membrane from the cooked white. The shell and membrane should come off relatively easy once you loosen it up. Note: save the egg shells for the compost pile.”

Kelly Yandell, a Dallas resident who writes a food blog entitled The Meaning of Pie, wrote about eggs in her posting April 10. She describes the sizing and grading of eggs found in grocery stores, ideas on how to cook the perfect scrambled, boiled, and fried egg, and how long eggs can safely be kept. The full article can be found at Her website is user friendly and has a wide array of searchable recipes.

Article re-posted from April, 2014.

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