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Eggs

  • tdesap Jan 28, 2008 12:29 PM
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Ok so where would one find the best fresh eggs? You know the ones that have that gorgeous yellow/orange yolk. Just like the ones that you can get all over Europe and they have the most amazing taste.
Please help me :)

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  1. I've been looking for help on this too. See these previous threads:

    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/455822
    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/475751

    I've been trying to find them since I read Michael Pollan's "Omnivore's Dilemma". The orange/golden yolks come from chickens that are pasture raised. These chickens are able to peck at grasses and insects in addition to grains. We may be able to find them somewhere, but I can assure you that it won't be easy. In any event, I don't think it is possible to find them at all in the winter b/c there is no pasture to peck at. Let's revive this link in the spring.

    20 Replies
    1. re: acd123

      About this time of year my wife and I were driving home along a back road on a Saturday and spotted an "Eggs" sign at the entrance to a farm. We were out of eggs so turned up the drive. "Look at the cat." my wife said, and I answered, "How many cats can you find in this picture?" This was an Amish farm. I'd guess that there were about twenty spotted cats thoroughly camouflaged in the barnyard against the snow.

      There were also chickens running about as well. Most of them were in the barn though, where the family kept its stash of eggs. When we cracked them later, the yolks stood up like golf balls and were a bright reddish orange - so deep a colour that many would toss them. The taste was the best we encountered since moving to Bruce county.

      Loose chickens forage very well in winter.

      1. re: DockPotato

        Oh DockPotato, you must give more of an idea as to where you were driving! Those are the eggs of my childhood, and I've been ruined for any other egg. I'm making do fairly well on Fresh From the Farm's eggs. But a pastured egg, I have to have that again! What town were you near?

        1. re: singe

          Yes, DockPotato, PLEASE please provide more info. Those are not the eggs of my childhood. I grew up on the supermarket eggs that we all know. And you're right, I don't know from foraging chickens; I'm a city boy. But I love eggs, and I would drive anywhere in S. Ontario to find the eggs you (and Michael Pollan) describe.

          1. re: acd123

            I wish I could remember exactly. I've been over the roads in that area a few times since but haven't been able to pinpoint the farm again.

            It is in this rough vicinity:

            http://www.mapquest.com/maps/map.adp?...

            I think it's either the road on which Dobbinton is shown or one of the east-west roads to the north or south.

            I won't be driving those roads till spring now. Too hazardous - every road in Bruce County has been closed today by the OPP because of whiteouts, wind and ice, and the worst is yet to come between now and Easter. When I find the farm I will post its location because it is special.

            I will tell you this though if you are spelunking our backroads. Watch for farms with no hydro lines strung to the property. If there is a crude sign out for anything, it's well worth investigsating - eggs, maple syrup, produce, chicken, ducks, geese, produce, furniture, sheds, quilts or what have you.

            The eggs I described are the most extreme I've found in the area probably because the chickens were largely self-supporting. I haven't searched all that hard for it because there are excellent ones available from handier sources.

            In good weather when they have produce to sell, Sharon and Elmer, a young Amish couple, operate a stand in the parking lot of the Home Hardware on Highway 21 outside of Kincardine. Her eggs are what you're looking for. They are huge with strong yellow yolk colour, thick brown shells, tough membrane and a taste you don't appreciate until the stand is closed after Thanksgiving. $1.25 a dozen - please deposit any used cartons.

            At this time I'm buying from Lowry's, a very good small-quota farmer with high quality eggs that are fresh daily and popular with us locals. The birds are not free range but they aren't battery hens either. Very large white eggs with thick shells, tough membranes and paler yellow yolks. The size, texture and taste are miles ahead of anything off the retail shelf at only $1.75 a dozen. They are at the end of Lake Range Road, the first farm south of Lurgan Beach Road.

            1. re: DockPotato

              This item appeared on the Wightman bulletin board site and should be what many of you are searching for:

              FOR SALE: FRESH FARM EGGS 2$ a dozen. Your choice white or brown available . My chickens are free run , not caged, and have lay tasty eggs. If interested please email me majorward@hurontel.on.ca
              Kimberly (majorward@hurontel.on.ca)
              Dungannon / Lucknow - Tuesday, March 4, 2008 at 02:25:50

              Here is the Wightman site:

              http://www.wightman.ca/guestbook.html

              Anyone sourcing boar, venison, elk, organic produce etc can pop a notice here at no cost and reach the farm gate in Grey/Bruce/Huron/Perth.

              1. re: DockPotato

                Thanks for the info. Sounds interesting. Not trying to split hairs but I've been told that "free run" are just cageless, barn raised chickens that may have a small outdoor area. Not truly pastured, but who knows, they may be amazing.

                1. re: acd123

                  What is "pastured" as applied to chickens? I've never encountered the term except on this board. I've never heard it used locally by any of our producers - yet. How is this designation defined and applied commercially?

                  1. re: acd123

                    That may be the technical definition when seen on a box of eggs at the store; sometimes farmers are at a loss as to what to call eggs from chickens that run around like the used to.

                    1. re: Full tummy

                      I haven't seen "pastured" promoted by farmers. If chickens are allowed to roam a large pasture they are in danger from foxes, stray dogs, and coyotes, when they go beyond the protective zone of the barnyard. I think this is a pastoral descriptor, unbased in reality.

                      1. re: jayt90

                        No, very much based in reality. They are not allowed to roam a large pasture.

                        See farmers like Joel Salatin (http://www.polyfacefarms.com/) and the Stoddarts (http://www.stoddart.ca/ - info on the chickens/eggs can be found at http://www.stoddart.ca/index_files/Pa...).

                        You should read "The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan.

                        It's not at all diffucult to raise "pastured" poultry. Yes, the occasional chicken may be lost, but that's life on the farm.

                        1. re: acd123

                          The links don't provide a lot.
                          One does not work.
                          Salatin is nowhere near Ontario.
                          Stoddart uses 12' trailers to move the chicks. Look at the picture: they live in a trailer moved around to follow cow dung!
                          Yes, I'd agree it is easy to raise this kind of pastured poultry, but it is a sham.

                          1. re: jayt90

                            Salatin in nowhere near Ontario? So what?

                            They don't live in a trailer. It is a movable enclosure. They a free to roam around, eat insects and grasses in addition to grains and peck as chickens are meant to do. The enclosure is moved when a new patch of pasture is needed. They chickens fertilize the old patch and start on a new one. A highly sustainable method.

                            A sham? Not sure why you think that. The colour of the yolks in those eggs make it clear it's not a sham.

                            And you're not a fan of cow dung. Do you prefer synthetic, petrochemical fertilizers?

                            1. re: acd123

                              The enclosure on wheels, maybe not a trailer, is 12 feet long, according to Stoddart.
                              Did you know that darker yolks can be produced, i.e. effected, by feeding kale? Who needs insects?
                              It will take a lot of 12'moveable enclosures to supply eggs for the number of people who want them. I doubt whether Stoddarts' are available for $1.25-$1.75/doz. as noted by Dockpotato.

                              1. re: jayt90

                                They golden yolk can be produced by having the chickens eat a diverse diet, including insects, grains, grasses, and maybe even kale. I would rather eat those eggs, whether $1.50/doz. or $5.00/doz. than eggs from a factory farm.

                            2. re: jayt90

                              I grew up on a farm outside of Ottawa, and our chickens had run of the place; true, there was a designated barnyard, but there wasn't much preventing them from wandering further afield. We had names for many of the chickens; I spent a lot of time with them in my lap, and they sometimes went off in the forest, laid their eggs there, and then tromped back with a whole bunch of chicks following close behind weeks later. It's possible there was the odd fox incident, but none that I recall.

            2. re: DockPotato

              The golden yolk eggs are the norm in Europe 12 months a year, so the winter weather would not be a reason.
              I started a topic on the food board a couple of years ago, and basically the conclusion was free range, bugs, etc. etc.
              My biggest problem with eggs is the freshness...not ..of most purchased in Toronto.
              I really preferred the Rowe farms eggs for years, but lately they don't seem to be as fresh or tasty.
              Would love suggestions for purchasing the freshest eggs in the GTA.
              Really prefer organic, but anything !!
              Really don't like the omega eggs.
              Possibly just my imagination, but I swear they have a slightly fishy smell.

              I don't want to drive for hours to pick up a dozen.

              1. re: erly

                I don't think they are fully pastured (they don't have the super-yellowy yolks), and they aren't certified organic (though I think farming practices are in keeping with organic principles), but the freshest eggs I've found are in the north St. Lawrence Market, on Saturdays. Hanlan Clark sells eggs that are Thursday/Friday laid, for Saturday sale, so the eggs are no more than 48 hours old.

                I wish I had more specific information about how the chickens are tended, but I always feel bad holding up the line to ask questions.

                1. re: chloe103

                  Thanks Chloe,
                  I am off to the market this Sat.
                  Will try Hanlan

                  1. re: chloe103

                    I read about Harlan Clark and his wife, Norine, in Saturday's Star. I think they may possibly be the cutest and most hard-working people who've ever lived. Check out the article:

                    http://www.thestar.com/article/296389

                    1. re: chloe103

                      chloe, don't feel bad asking questions at Harlan. I didn't. You're only new once so after you've asked your questions you're done for the rest of your customer life. Besides, you can share your info with the CH's so really you can look at it as doing Harlan a favour.

              2. I seem to remember that they sell eggs from the chickens at Riverdale Farm.

                3 Replies
                1. re: thought_for_food

                  That's true, but it's first come first served and they run out almost immediately, as they don't have that many hens. I had a frustrating experience with that. I got there early, waited behind a mother and son, each with egg carton in hand. The rule is one doz per FAMILY. Well, the farm-hand was suspicious, so she asked about their relationship, and reminded them of the rule, but the mother and son insisted they weren't related. Uh-huh. Anyway, I was up next, and all the eggs were gone. I never tried again. Boo-hoo. :-(

                  1. re: singe

                    I go to Riverdale all the time and I've never seen 'em there. I would love to find a reliable farm source of pasture raised chickens and eggs within a 60 minute drive of TO.

                    1. re: acd123

                      Check out the Stoddart Family Farm. Google 'em.

                2. There is a guy who sells farm fresh eggs @ Dufferin Grove Farmer's Market. He's there every Thursday from 3pm to 7pm but you pretty much have to arrive right at 3pm, as they sell out pretty much right away. In case you don't know where Dufferin Grove is, it's across from the Dufferin Mall south of Bloor.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: badlittlebaby

                    Thanks for the info. I go do Dufferin Grove every week. It is the olive oil and feta guy?

                    "Farm fresh" is not enough. I'm looking for eggs from pasture raised chickens. Any idea if his eggs are pastured?

                    1. re: acd123

                      yes, i know you're looking for pastured chickens - when i say farm-fresh, i mean pastured. again, i always miss out on the eggs from him so i have yet to even try them. i do believe they are from a small, pastured farm though and this is why there are so few per week and why they are so popular. and yes, it's the olive oil/feta guy. just ask him when you're there next! and if you could let me know if you are successful by posting here again, that would be great. :)