Monday, July 27, 2009

Fresh Eggs

Fresh eggs from pastured chickens--have you ever had any?  I grew up on them and didn't give it a thought back then. Then life took me here and there so I was dependent on the grocery stores.  I noticed a subtle change over the years in these eggs, but it wasn't until I was able to have my own chickens again that I figured it out.  The yolk in store bought eggs was the familiar pale yellow with a bland taste, but when I cracked open our fresh eggs, the yolk was a beautiful deep gold and bursting with flavor.  I had forgotten how good those eggs were! 

Why such a big difference?  Well, supermarket eggs are from chickens that are confined in cages only big enough for them to turn around in.  They are fed a grain-based mash or pellet diet filled with antibiotics, drugs and synthetic vitamins.  And they are kept in large factory building settings. 

Pastured chickens are allowed to run around outside in the fresh air, soaking up the sun which produces vitamin D in their eggs.  Chickens are born scratchers.  They love to scratch in the dirt and peck.  What are they pecking?  Little bits of gravel (which helps them digest their food), fresh greens, bugs, and seeds.  A happy healthy hen is one who is out in the yard clucking, pecking and scratching.  The proof is in the egg! 

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