It’s been a hard summer for the Incredible Edible Egg. As many of you know, a huge voluntary recall of shell eggs occurred in August after the Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control traced a salmonella outbreak to two different farms in Iowa. To date, this recall has affected more than 500 million eggs. It appears the ongoing investigation is now focusing on a feed mill located near both farms. You can find a ton of up-to-date information about this investigation, including a list of frequently asked questions and a list of recalled brands, on the FDA website here.
It is a shame that this has caused many Americans to shy away from eating eggs, because they are such a delicious source of protein and vitamins. The Virginia Egg Council has sent a release with a list of questions and answers, including the question “Is it safe to buy eggs?” Answer: “Yes. However, as a general food safety rule, it is recommended that eggs be cooked until the white and yolks are firm or, for dishes containing eggs, until an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit is reached.”
Well, that’s great for folks like me who prefer their eggs scrambled or hard boiled. But I’m probably in the minority. I know plenty of people, including my husband, who love to dip their toast into a runny yolk. So while I understand that recommendation, I find it very unrealistic. The egg council offered a few other safety tips, which can easily be remembered as Clean, Separate, Cook, Chill. This basically means that we should treat eggs as we treat raw chicken: wash our hands and everything that comes into contact with raw eggs, keep them separate from ready-to-eat items in the grocery cart and bags, cook thoroughly and keep chilled at 33 to 40 degrees.
That’s interesting, because I know egg farmers who don’t even refrigerate their farm fresh eggs. And wasn’t it just a couple of decades ago when Mom would let us lick the cake batter from the mixer beater? Did anyone ever get sick from that?
If you want to stay on the safe side with fully cooked eggs and are looking for some new recipes, egg council spokeswoman Mary Rapoport sent along a week’s worth of ideas, including Muffin Frittatas, Pizza-Topped Scrambled Eggs, and a Bacon and Egg Grilled Cheese. Look for links to those recipes below.
Has this recall caused any of you to change the way you purchase or prepare eggs?
Coffee Cup Scramble (easy for kids to make themselves!)