If there’s anything that I’ve learned in the art of survival as a college student, it’s the importance of never wasting precious resources. Last week, one of my roommates was sitting at the dining table with a carton of eggs. She showed me a bowl with a cracked egg inside and asked me if I thought the egg was still okay. It looked okay to me, so I told her I thought it was fine. My roommate was concerned that she had too many eggs, and that they would go bad soon. This got me thinking of a life hack that I had heard about a while back…
For myself, my cycle for food goes weekly. When I go home on the weekends, I get food that will last me for the week. Whenever I cook food, I try my best to finish it all by the end of the week. I’m pretty good about using up my food supply wisely, making sure nothing gets spoiled, going to waste. Compared to meat, cheese, and produce, eggs last for a pretty long time. I’ve never been afraid to eat eggs that have been in my fridge for a week or two. After doing some research, I learned that eggs can last for 3-4 weeks after the sell-by date. Fresh eggs will last a long time, as long as they are refrigerated. Just be sure to check the sell-by date on the package so you know how long your eggs can last. But just in case you’re still not sure, here’s a quick and easy trick you can use:
Fill a medium-fairly large bowl with cold water, then place the egg in the bowl. If the egg sinks to the bottom, it’s still fresh. If the egg sits on the bottom but rises a bit (like mine did,) it’s still good, but make sure to use it soon. If the egg rises to the top, then it’s no longer good to use. Why does this work? Bacteria in the egg breaks down protein in the egg that creates gas in the egg, making it spoil. As for the eggs that I tested, they all sank to the bottom but rose a bit, so they were still good.
Eggs are definitely a useful ingredient for the low-budget college student. There are lots of ways to cook an egg, scrambled, sunny side up, poached… Not only can it be a key ingredient for baked goods, eggs can turn leftovers into an omelette, or make a good addition to fried rice or soup. You even save bread that’s going old by making french toast. So whenever you want to make something quick to eat, see what you can make with an egg or two. Never underestimate the power of the egg!