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Jackknifed Juggernaut
10-17-2005, 10:41 AM
I've always washed them. But since the egg is still intact, I would think that washing would be unnecessary.

Beware of Doug
10-17-2005, 10:48 AM
I've always washed them. But since the egg is still intact, I would think that washing would be unnecessary.In my kitchen, I wash everything unless there's a good reason not to. Do you have a good reason not to?

Besides: How intact is "intact"? Is eggshell nature's perfect barrier to bacteria? They used to think that about human skin, once upon a time.

FlyingCowOfDoom
10-17-2005, 10:52 AM
Chickens have a cloaca, which means they have one hole for laying eggs, urinating, and pooping. I don't think anyone washes the eggs before they get to the store. I'd wash the pots.

--FCOD

tdn
10-17-2005, 10:53 AM
Is eggshell nature's perfect barrier to bacteria?
You'd think that any germs that leaked out would be killed by the boiling water.

Still you won't catch me not washing the pot.

jacksprat
10-17-2005, 11:36 AM
Chickens have a cloaca, which means they have one hole for laying eggs, urinating, and pooping. I don't think anyone washes the eggs before they get to the store. I'd wash the pots.

--FCOD

Of course the eggs are given at the very least a peremptory rinse before they arrive at the store. You'd absolutely notice if you found a dozen freshly-laid, unwashed eggs in your carton, instead of the finished product you'll find in any supermarket. They are also typically given a light coating of mineral oil -- whether this is for protection against contamination, or for the sake of presentation, I don't know.

While eggshells are indeed porous, they do in fact function as a barrier to all sorts of contamination. It's one of the reasons that eggs will last and remain edible for 4-5 weeks in your refrigerator, and a smaller, but still considerable, amount of time unrefrigerated. It's also part of the reason that the consumption of raw eggs only represents a slight risk for those who are reasonably healthy.

jacksprat
10-17-2005, 11:38 AM
Chickens have a cloaca, which means they have one hole for laying eggs, urinating, and pooping. I don't think anyone washes the eggs before they get to the store. I'd wash the pots.

--FCOD

Of course the eggs are given at the very least a peremptory rinse before they arrive at the store. You'd absolutely notice if you found a dozen freshly-laid, unwashed eggs in your carton, instead of the finished product you'll find in any supermarket. They are also typically given a light coating of mineral oil -- whether this is for protection against contamination, or for the sake of presentation, I don't know.

While eggshells are indeed porous, they do in fact function as a barrier to all sorts of contamination. It's one of the reasons that eggs will last and remain edible for 4-5 weeks in your refrigerator, and a smaller, but still considerable, amount of time unrefrigerated. It's also part of the reason that the consumption of raw eggs only represents a slight risk for those who are reasonably healthy.

I'd give the pots a simple hand-wash, though -- there can be odors involved in cooking eggs, and many times a small crack in an egg will develop while being boiled, which might adhere to the inside of the pot. A rinse and a swipe with a clean sponge and another rinse should do it, no?

pocelene
10-17-2005, 12:16 PM
I don't think anyone washes the eggs before they get to the store. You've never been on a farm. All eggs are spotted with dung and all are subsequently washed before being packed. They are not sterilzed. Boiling does this. Which of course will also kill the germs you fear, so washing a pot you boil in is a waste of time and water. Like a teakettle, minerals will create spots, but that's not a problem unless your mother inlaw comes to visit.

gotpasswords
10-18-2005, 01:09 AM
More often than not, an egg will crack and leave a thin layer of poached egg, so I just wash the pot.

Excalibre
10-18-2005, 08:21 AM
You've never been on a farm. All eggs are spotted with dung and all are subsequently washed before being packed. They are not sterilzed. Boiling does this. Which of course will also kill the germs you fear, so washing a pot you boil in is a waste of time and water. Like a teakettle, minerals will create spots, but that's not a problem unless your mother inlaw comes to visit.
Boiling water isn't sufficient to kill all germs. Besides, do you want your pans caked with dead bacteria? Boiling doesn't get rid of the toxins that are in large part the actual proximate cause of illness. I wouldn't think it's a great health danger not to wash the pot, but you'd probably be mostly okay if you didn't wash any of your dishes. Besides, if you add salt to the water in order to make the eggs float and less liable to break, you'll get more than minor mineral spots - it'll be a very visible coating of salt on the sides of the pot.

I think it's weird that anyone would be so focused on reducing their time washing dishes as to decide not to wash out an egg pan.

iamthewalrus(:3=
10-18-2005, 12:46 PM
Boiling water isn't sufficient to kill all germs.Perhaps not, but it's pretty much the standard that we use for eating things. If you didn't think that the pot was clean enough after boiling, what are you doing eating the eggs?!

JustAnotherGeek
10-18-2005, 01:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Excalibre
Boiling water isn't sufficient to kill all germs.
Perhaps not, but it's pretty much the standard that we use for eating things.

True; unless we're talking about some really really really nasty and really really really REALLY rare buggers, boiling pretty much does it for kitchen use.

However,
More often than not, an egg will crack and leave a thin layer of poached egg
... which would leave a possible site for future infestation by nasties.

Soap and water scrubbing is generally not very anti-septic, while boiling is. However, washing does physically remove good bacterial breeding grounds, leaving only an aseptic metal surface. It's the difference between killing the bacteria and removing their food.

Valgard
10-18-2005, 02:40 PM
Soap and water scrubbing is generally not very anti-septic, while boiling is. However, washing does physically remove good bacterial breeding grounds, leaving only an aseptic metal surface. It's the difference between killing the bacteria and removing their food.

That's what I was thinking - I'd rather not have a pot with a thin layer of boiled chicken crap all over it, even if it is technically sterile. My sister used to raise chickens in our backyard, not the cleanest animals around.

JustAnotherGeek
10-18-2005, 03:13 PM
My sister used to raise chickens in our backyard, not the cleanest animals around

I hear that. My mom used to raise em. Foul fowl.

Although, few things beat good fresh eggs.





who's gonna say it...

Anne Neville
10-18-2005, 03:19 PM
I do, but only because I've got a dishwasher. If I had to hand wash the pot, I probably wouldn't if there were no obvious bits of egg on it.

vetbridge
10-18-2005, 03:20 PM
Of course the eggs are given at the very least a peremptory rinse before they arrive at the store. You'd absolutely notice if you found a dozen freshly-laid, unwashed eggs in your carton, instead of the finished product you'll find in any supermarket.

A friend of mine works in the dairy department of a local grocery store. During a recent routine inspection the guy from the agricultural department found one brand of eggs had "unacceptable amounts of fecal contamination" and the store had to destroy a few hundred dozen eggs. My question was "what is an acceptable level of fecal contamination?". ;)

Kimstu
10-18-2005, 03:24 PM
Of course the eggs are given at the very least a peremptory rinse before they arrive at the store.




Not to be a vocabulary Nazi here, but just in case anybody else was momentarily troubled by mental images of a mean-looking egg rinser snarling "Yo! Eggs! Get your sorry shells under that faucet NOW!!",* I think jacksprat meant to say "a perfunctory rinse".




* I guess that egg rinser was the hard-boiled type, huh? Ow! Ow! Okay, I'm leaving, I'm leaving!

Cervaise
10-18-2005, 03:37 PM
My mother has eight or ten egg-laying chickens (as opposed to fryers), and the eggs she collects from them are surprisingly clean.

Maybe it's because the coop she had my stepfather build contains a bidet for each bird.

;)

light strand
10-18-2005, 06:27 PM
I rarely wash pots in which I've boiled food. I have non-stick pans so a wipe with a towel is usually sufficient to remove any gunk stuck to the surface.

But I will put my standard disclaimer here: Microbiologist are careless pigs when it comes to bacterial contamination. Your pot may get lime deposits from the water, and the shell itself (which is composed of lime), but it should not be contaminated.

thirdname
10-18-2005, 08:04 PM
Last night I was feeling really lazy and instead of putting a stainless-steel pot in the dishwasher after cooking some pasta, I cleaned it with paper towels and water. I will take a close look at it and see if I can see any residue. I wonder if this is a horrible thing to do.

Kiminy
10-18-2005, 11:15 PM
I add a generous amount of salt to the water when I boil eggs (since it helps the eggs float, making them less likely to break), so I generally rinse out the salt residue afterwards--usually with just hot tap water. While I realize that this may not completely sterilize the pan, I'm also not very likely to put any uncooked food into the pan to be contaminated later, unless I also plan to *cook* said food after it is put into the pan. Since we use the process of cooking as a way of sterilizing our food (at least as much as we do it to improve the taste), I figure anything that comes out of the pan in a form I intend to eat should be sterile enough.

As for other boiled foods, though, I do normally wash with soap afterwards. I typically add a little olive oil to pasta when I'm cooking it (to reduce stickiness), so I need soap to remove the oil.

In the long run, though, I think we place far too much emphasis on sterilization. While I certainly don't want to do things that will increase the chances of serious food poisoning (like eating raw eggs straight out of the chicken), a few germs in our guts just helps build up resistance in the future. Humans have been around for millenia after all, and if a few errant germs were going to kill us off, we would have gone the way of the dinosaurs centuries ago.

davenportavenger
10-18-2005, 11:57 PM
I don't wash pots after boiling eggs or pasta. I just wipe them down with a wet paper towel (actually, that is just for the pasta since it occasionally sticks to the bottom, I don't do anything to the egg pan unless one cracked). Everyone is way too germophobic these days. I guarantee you that the amount of fecal residue on a store-bought egg is less than the fecal matter you get in a Big Mac.

audiobottle
10-19-2005, 08:42 AM
I don't know why your eggs are cracking, but I find that if I put a small pinhole in the bottom of the egg (or top, I doubt it matters) before boiling, I get a perfectly boiled egg every time. No little indents on the bottom or top or anything. Because I put that hole in there, though, I wash the pan. Nothing comes out that I can see, but it's really not that hard to clean the pot.

MsRobyn
10-19-2005, 08:47 AM
I personally don't, but only because I make hard-boiled eggs for snacking, not to use in recipes. I don't see the need to wash one pot that was used for boiling water, especially when there are no other dirty dishes to wash.

To me, it's like washing out the measuring cup I used to measure water. At some point, it's a pointless exercise and a waste of water, soap and time.

Robin

Cheesesteak
10-19-2005, 09:14 AM
There is definitely residue left in the water from the eggshell, let's put it this way, would you drink that water? I wouldn't, though I'd happily drink water from a clean measuring cup. If the water isn't clean enough to drink, the vessel should be washed, even if it's just a quick rub and rinse.

Monty
10-19-2005, 09:27 AM
To avoid eggs cracking when boiling eggs, I avoid boiling eggs. What I do instead is hard cook them. Bring the water to a boil, then remove the pan from the heat and put the eggs in it. Leave the eggs covered in the water for the appropriate time for the number of eggs.

After removing the eggs, of course, I wash the pan.

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