CLUCK, CLUCK, CLUCK!!!
I remember this time last year that the chickens here on the Shawhan farm hit their peak with egg production. I'm not sure why it took them as long as October to really start cranking, but it did. So of course, I figured this fall would be no different. Though we get a good many eggs a day (at least a dozen to a dozen and a half) it's not quite the number I was hoping for. It seems we peaked a few weeks ago when we were getting no less than 20 a day.
I also wonder why, out of two different "batches" of chickens, that neither time has every single hen laid an egg. It is obvious that someone is not doing her duty. Remember my perfect world of exactly 20 or 30 chickens, running around the yard with gorgeous feathers and leaving my immaculate flower beds alone and steering clear of road? This fantasy also included everyone doing her job! I want 20 or 30 eggs every. single. day. if I have 20 or 30 hens. I don't think this is too much to ask for. However, having chickens is just plain crazy and it makes you go crazy too because I think they have a pact with God and ruin your plan once you feel like you have a good one in place.
It really is wrong of me to complain. I cannot be upset with a dozen eggs a day.That is at least 7 dozen eggs a week and 84 eggs! Talk about A LOT of scrambled eggs and egg sandwiches. I love my eggs, so much that I don't think I could stomach a store bought egg ever again. But lets face it... no one can eat that many eggs. So the question is, what do you do with them all?
Thankfully, a lot of people know we have chickens and I can distribute my extras out to friends and family. I can usually fulfill their egg requests and keep plenty for Dan and myself. All this month I have been stockpiling my eggs then taking them to my grandparent's every weekend, since the Shaw family works there and pass them out. There are always plenty of takers. Once October is over, I'm going to try and get with my neighbor again who was buying a few dozen off of me before the craziness of fall set in.
Sometimes when I have a lot of eggs hanging out in the fridge, I make apple taffy bread. It requires 6 eggs and yields two loaves. It's very yummy! I have some frozen in my freezer in hopes to have a quick holiday treat. Something I haven't done in a while and I should, is hard boil some eggs. The only downfall to doing that is you have wait about a month to hard boil our eggs. Super fresh eggs, i.e., ones you don't buy at the store, don't peel well at all once they are cooked. I'm not sure why, and I really should research that, but they don't. Trust me, I've tried! Older eggs peel much better than fresh.
OR, something one can do, is freeze eggs. Now this DOES require fresh eggs. You have to break them and scramble them a little. Depending on the use you are freezing them for will determine what else you add to the scrambled mix. For example, if you wish to reserve them for baking needs or for breakfast, you will need to add 1/2 teaspoon of salt for each cup of egg. If the eggs you're freezing are going to be used in recipes for desserts, then you will have to add 1 teaspoon of honey. After the scrambling and mixing, just pour the mixture into ice cube trays. Two "cubes" equal 1 egg. After retrieving the eggs from the freezer for use, be sure to use them within 24 hours. Frozen eggs will be for 9 months to a year. I have not tried this method, mainly because I assume I will never run out of eggs.
Also remember, any farm fresh, unwashed eggs are good in the refrigerator for 6 months.
Or you can just keep finding those people willing to take a dozen off your hands. Once you go farm fresh egg, you never go back!
...cluck... cluck... cluck...
"How to Freeze Eggs." Chickens Magazine Jan/Feb. 2012: 12