6 Tips To Handling Easter Eggs Safely
When we think of Easter, we think of bunnies, baskets, and everything that goes inside those baskets — chocolate, jelly beans and, of course, Easter eggs! Those colorful eggs are a holiday tradition as well as a fun craft activity. But eggs are also a food item that requires special attention. Here are 6 tips to handling Easter eggs safely.
When you're shopping for eggs, pay attention to the sell-by date. Make sure you buy and consume them within three weeks of the date stamped on the carton.
Always keep your eggs in their original packaging — don't be tempted to consolidate two half cartons of eggs into one. This is just a way to make sure the sell-by date matches the eggs inside and you don't accidentally cook up a spoiled egg.
All eggs — raw or cooked — should be stored in the refrigerator at a temperature of 40°F or lower. Bacteria grow the fastest between 40°F and 140°F. At room temperature, bacteria doubles every twenty minutes, so on Easter morning you want to keep an eye on how long eggs in the Easter baskets are out before the kids start peeling them for a snack. Any eggs that have been out for two hours should be thrown away.
Dyeing Easter Eggs
If you plan on eating your Easter Eggs, use food-grade dye kits, regular food coloring or natural dyes. Coloring aside, what you should really pay attention to is the temperature of your eggs. Once they're boiled, they should be cooled immediately in ice water. Once they're cool, they can be dyed in your preferred method and dried. You can keep your eggs safe for eating if you set aside a spot with kitchen towels in your refrigerator where your dyed eggs can dry.
Eating Easter Eggs
They will be good for one week. If you want to repurpose your Easter eggs for deviled eggs or egg salad, boil and dye your eggs a day or two before Easter so you'll have plenty of time to make your egg dish and eat it before the eggs spoil.
Easter Egg Hunts
If you plan on doing an Easter egg hunt, the eggs should only be used as props and thrown away at the end of your festivities. If you are set on using eggs for your Easter dinner and having an Easter egg hunt, set apart the eggs for eating from the hunting eggs by dyeing them a specific color. For instance, make sure all the eggs dyed purple are used only for the hunt and the rest you can use immediately for dinner. That way you know to put the purple eggs in the garbage and no one will be in danger of eating a bad egg.