If you are worried about how the rising food costs will affect your healthful diet, worry no more: Eggs are a nutritious solution. They're all natural, very affordable, versatile and one of the highest-quality proteins you can eat. So if you are on a tight budget, get cracking! Here are some facts you should know about eggs, plus some exceptionally delicious recipes.
Fun facts about eggs
- Eggs cost less than any other protein source.
- One egg has 13 essential vitamins and minerals, healthful unsaturated fats and antioxidants.
- Egg yolks contain luteine and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that can help prevent macular degeneration, or age-related blindness.
- One egg has only 70 calories.
- Eggs do not contain hormones or antibiotics.
- The size of an egg relates to the size of the chicken, not the grade.
- Fresh, uncooked eggs in their shells last for at least three to five days after purchase when kept in the refrigerator.
- Cook eggs until the yolk is white and firm. Dishes that contain eggs should be cooked to a temperature of 160 degrees F.
- If you can't determine if an egg is raw or hard-boiled, spin it; a boiled egg will spin easily, while a raw one will wobble.
All recipes courtesy of the American Egg Board
Summer Squash Omelet
Makes 2 servingsFilling:
1/2 cup thinly sliced zucchini
1/2 cup thinly sliced yellow crookneck squash
1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped sweet red pepper
2 tablespoons waterOmelet:
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon basil leaves, crushed
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons butter, cooking oil or cooking sprayDirections:
1. Combine all filling ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Cover and cook about 3 or 4 minutes, until vegetables are crisp-tender.2. Remove lid and continue cooking until all liquid is evaporated. Replace lid and let rest in a warm place.3. Whisk eggs together with water, cheese, basil and garlic powder.4. Melt 1 teaspoon butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Pour 1/2 cup of the egg mixture into skillet. Cook egg mixture while pushing portions at edges toward the center to cook, tilting pan as necessary.5. When the top is cooked and no liquid remains, spoon half of the vegetable mixture over half of the egg. Fold omelet in half. Move omelet to a serving plate and keep warm. Repeat process with remaining ingredients.
Cheesy Vegetable Pasta and Egg Skillet
Makes 4 servingsIngredients:
1 (7-ounce) package small shell pasta (conchiglie)
2 cups AE Dairy low-fat cottage cheese
1 teaspoon tarragon or marjoram leaves, crushed
2 cups steamed or frozen (thawed) broccoli, cauliflower and carrot vegetable blend
1. Cook pasta following package directions and drain. Add pasta to a cooking spray coated 10-inch skillet. Mix in cottage cheese and tarragon until pasta is fully coated. Mix in vegetables and stir evenly.2. Heat over medium heat, stirring often until fully heated, about 5 to 10 minutes. With the back of a spoon, make four indentations about 2 inches around.3. Break eggs individually into a small bowl and pour one into each hole. Cover and cook until eggs are fully set, about 5 to 7 minutes. Try not to let the eggs harden. To serve, place entire skillet on the table and let each person serve herself. Break egg yolk into pasta; the pasta will soak it up.
Honey and Apple Bread Pudding
Makes 4 servingsIngredients:
4 slices whole wheat bread
1 cup AE Dairy milk
3/4 cup chunky applesauce
1/4 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamonDirections:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat small custard cups with cooking spray and place in a baking pan.2. Flip a glass upside down and press into the center of each bread slice, cutting out four circles. Place bread circles in the bottom of the custard cups.3. Break eggs into a bowl and whisk with milk, applesauce, honey and cinnamon. Pour mixture evenly into custard cups. Tear the remaining bread into small pieces and sprinkle over egg mixture.4. Cook custard for 30 minutes, undisturbed. After 30 minutes, poke a knife into the middle of one of the custard cups, if it comes out clean, it is finished; if not, cook for another 5 minutes or until cooked through. Remove pan from oven. Let custard cups cool.
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