Do you ever wonder where to get eggs? Most people purchase them in the refrigerator section of their grocery store. However, if you get a chance to get fresh farm eggs, grab them quick. A friend of mine lives on a small acreage on Whidbey Island. She has some feathered friends: turkeys, pheasants, a variety of chickens, and geese. Last winter I asked her for goose eggs because I had never had them and wondered how they would taste compared to a standard chicken egg. By spring though, the geese went broody and stopped laying, but she managed to gather and share 3 varieties of chickens and a few pheasant eggs for our consumption.
The three variety of chicken eggs included: buff Orpington, silver-grey Dorking, and buff brahm Bantam with the addition of a ring necked pheasant egg (photo presents this order). The size and color of the egg shells clearly separate the difference between the eggs. The buff Orpington (large brown) and the silver-grey Dorking (large white) have standard shells that cracked like any other egg I previously purchased. However, the ring necked pheasant (small dark brown/olive) and the buff brahm Bantam (small brown) had thick dense shells. I was actually concerned about breaking the yolk, but successfully I kept them all intact. I have never made so many eggs before, so thankfully I had my mom and Michael to help taste.
The base I prepared combined slices of yellow onions and coined Yukon gold potatoes with a little sea salt and pepper, which is a standard brunch base for us on the weekends. First, I sauteed the onions just until they were soft and then set them aside from the heat,while the potatoes boiled in salted water. After 8-10 minutes, I could pierce the potatoes with a knife. I drained the potatoes and once they cooled cut them into round circular disks. Because I wanted to taste the subtle differences between the eggs, I poached all the eggs. In my opinion, it allows for the best egg tasting experience; you get the delicate fluffiness of the egg white and the richness of creamy yolk. While the eggs were poaching, I sauteed the onions and potatoes in a little butter and extra virgin olive oil and kept them on warm until the eggs were done. After plating the onion and potato hash first, I added a pheasant and Bantam egg to each plate topped with some chopped flat-leaf parsley. The Dorking and Oprington, I plated separately.
The tasting results: We all more or less agreed with the outcome. The pheasant egg had a lighter softer yolk with a delicate gamier flavor. The Bantam yolk was the largest in proportion to egg white and only had a little more flavor than the pheasant egg. It tasted like any other egg (from the grocery store). The best would be a combination of the Dorking and Orpington. While the Dorking’s egg white was airy, fluffy, and full of texture, the Orpington’s yolk had a rich silkiness that surpassed the other eggs. As the yolk spilled over the sweet onions and salty potatoes, it created an excellent balance. Get out of the grocery store and go to a local farm/market to see if you can get your hands on any Dorking or Orpington chicken eggs.