Ellaberry Gardens
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Using Quail Eggs

We've had coturnix quail for a couple of years now.  They were originally going to be an urban meat raising experiment but I quickly learned what outstanding little egg layers they are! I still think it's an extremely viable component of an urban homesteading situation and I hope to add that quail in quantity for this soon but we're mainly using our quail for eggs right now.  Hens begin laying just 6-8 weeks after hatching and require less feed per ounce of body weight to produce eggs than chickens.  Quail produce one pounds of eggs on two pounds of feed while chickens require three pounds of feed to produce the same pound of eggs.  Mind you, it does require at least 5 quail eggs to equal one chicken egg so you'll have lots more crackin' to do! So, what do you do with all those quail eggs?

Boil them.  Fry them. Scramble them.  Pickle them.  Use them in your recipes.  Freeze them.  Anything you would do with a chicken egg, you can do with quail eggs.  You'll just have to use 5 of them for every chicken egg you would use. 

Here are a few pointers:

Boiling quail eggs

Put your eggs in a steamer basket in a single layer.  Put them over the water before you turn on the heat.  Turn the heat on high and as soon as the water starts boiling, set your timer for 5-6 minutes.  Pour your eggs into an icy bath.  Let sit until cool.  Peel and enjoy!  Make egg salad!  Eat them as little bite size snacks!  Pickle them (will post my pickling recipe soon!)  Yum!

Freezing quail eggs (works just as well with chicken eggs!)

Break eggs into a colander and push through with the back of a spoon to mix the yolks and whites.  You don't want to stir them at all because you don't want to introduce any air.  Fill up containers/jars that are freezable within about 1" of the top (you need extra room for expansion during freezing!) and label well.  3 tablespoons of this mixture equals about 1 large chicken egg.  I freeze them in pint jars mostly because that's equivalent to about 10 eggs and that's a useful amount for our family for quiches, omelets or holiday baking.  Choose your container size according to how much you'll be defrosting at one time.    If frozen in a deep freeze, these should keep for about 6 months or so. 

Great way to make sure you have your own backyard eggs for all your holiday baking which happens to coincide with a great drop in backyard egg production!

You can also just fry them up for breakfast!


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