Do you miss salted eggs? Those eggs in the Philippines that are colored deep red, and which we often eat with diced fresh tomatoes? I do. We don't have it here. Well, I do see some "pickled eggs" displayed in jars on the grocery shelves, but I guess those are prepared as described on this home food preservation page. The technique is obviously different.
Thanks to Bernice for giving me a link to the DOST's TeknoTulong website, I found the method to make salted eggs (which are commonly sold in the Philippine grocery stores and wet markets, even in small stores, distinguised by its red color).[Note as of 1-17-09: Seems like DOST does not want to share their information anymore. Don't they realize if they posted their how-to's online with google adsense, they might have more revenue than waiting for people to purchase their ebooks?]
As instructed in the Tagalog version, the eggs should be submerged for weeks in a supersaturated salt solution. What I did was I tried to fit in as much eggs as I could in a wide-mouthed quart jar. Then I filled it with water and poured it off to a small saucepan to approximate the amount that I will need to boil (of course I added a bit more water for allowance).
I boiled the water and continuously added canning salt (I used Morton) by 1-2 tbsp increments to fully dissolve it up to a point when it could no longer dissolve (which is called the supersaturated salt solution). I let it cool down. Since heat increases solubility, it was expected that some salt re-crystallized as the solution cooled.
Then I poured the solution into the jar with the eggs (I used chicken eggs as I do not have access to duck eggs), making sure that the eggs are fully submerged. (If eggs tend to float as the saltiness increases buoyancy, you should add some weight to it). I covered with a cheesecloth like so and used the screw band to secure it in place (you may use rubber band for the purpose). Notice that I placed the label containing the date of start. I noted on the calendar the 12th day when I should try boiling 1 egg. Which I did, but did not find it quite salty enough. So I waited some more, until the 25th day, when my friend Ana was here and we shared pinangat that she cooked.
I boiled the eggs in the brine itself for 10 minutes then submerged them in cold water, and cubed them, then mixed with diced fresh red ripe tomatoes. So, as a side dish, my contribution was the salted eggs with tomatoes as pictured above. Ana said she felt like she was back in the Philippines, and those eggs really tasted like the ones we used to buy in the nearby sari-sari stores. My boys were so delighted it was almost like a treat to them (and as you would expect from a child, they favored the salted eggs with tomatoes over the pinangat, especially that Ana used a small finger-sized type of fish.) The four eggs that we shared (there were four of us) were not enough, despite the pinangat. Bitin! My sons asked me to prepare some more. Isn't that something? I could now make my own salted eggs, and I am assured of the cleanliness and freshness!x
I am now on my second batch of salted eggs. Problem is, I will have to buy fresh tomatoes from the grocery stores next time.
UPDATE as of 1-17-09:
From Minnie's comment below: An alternative recipe:
Hi Manang, I'm Minnie V. Acosta of Malabon City, Philippines. Im a Food Technologist & a Fd. Demonstrator in our City I want to share a simple procedure of Salted Egg Making.
Duck egg 12 pcs
Coarse Salt 1 1/4 cups
Water 4 cups
Red granna crystals (for coloring eggs) 1 tsp.
1. Boil 1 1/4 cups coarse salt in 4 cups of water. Cool & strain the
2. Put 12 pcs eggs in a glass jar then pour the salt solution. Reserve atleast 1/2 - 1 cup of the salt solution and place in a plastic bag (para hindi lumutang)then cover.
3. Soak in Salt solution for 12-15 days.
4. Wash the eggs thoroughly then boil for atleast 20 minutes without cover. Remove from water then cool.
5. Making color solution : Dissolve 1 tsp. red granna crystals in 4 cups of water. Soak the eggs for atleast 60 seconds.
That's we how we make our salted eggs (Brine solution)here in the
Philippines. Hope this will help our kababayans. Thanks also to you manang I enjoyed reading comments and your advices
BELOW is the DOST Teknotulong's recipe for salted eggs, both in clay and in brine. I copied these when their website was back online (it tends to be changed often and sometimes not available).
SALTING EGGS IN BRINE:
Materials: Eggs (chicken or duck), Salt
Utensils: Wide-mouthed glass jar, Measuring cups, Cheesecloth
1. Boil 12 cups of water and 3 cups of salt. Cool.
2. Carefully place 12 chicken or duck eggs in wide-mouthed glass jar.
3. Pour the salt solution in the jar. Weigh down eggs with plate or cup to keep them from floating or use a sealed plastic bag filled with the salt solution.
4. Cover mouth of jar with perforated paper or cheesecloth. Keep in a cool, dry place.
5. Try one egg after 12 days by cooking below boiling point for 15 minutes. Soak again if eggs is not salty enough. Test for saltiness by cooking one egg after a few days until desired level of saltiness is attained. Duck eggs may need to be soaked longer.
6. Cook salt eggs below boiling point for 15 minutes.
Source: Technical Information and Documentation Division ITDI (DOST)
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SALTING EGGS IN CLAY
Eggs (chicken or duck), Clay, Salt
Utensils: Measuring cups, Palayok
1. Mix 12 cups of clay and 4 cups of salt, adding water gradually until well blended.
2. Apply generous portion of this mixture at the base of a clay pot or "palayok."
3. Coat each egg with the mixture.
4. Arrange in layers and allow 2.5-5.0 cm. in between to prevent breakage.
5. Cover with extra mixture and store.
6. Try one egg after 15 days by cooking below boiling point for 15 minutes. If not salty enough, extend storing period.
7. When ready, cook eggs below boiling point for 15 minutes.
8. Color eggs, if desired.