My neighbor Christine raises a dozen hens in her backyard, and the other day I bought 18 of their eggs, two of which were laid that very day (I saw them in the straw when the hen left her laying box). See how they’re different colors, even a light green? The color depends on the breed and what they’re fed.
When I eat these eggs I feel like I’m in a drug-induced state of heightened awareness. They’re just eggier than any other egg I’ve ever eaten. I don’t want to adulterate them with anything but salt, pepper, and toast.
When you crack them into a bowl, you see a bright, deep orange yolk with great posture: it practically stands straight up. Beating them requires a bit more effort than usual because the yolks are so sturdy. The orange yolk is because their diet is rich in carotenoids and they’ve pecked away at plenty of insects (needless to say, they’re not fed exclusively corn). There’s also a rumor that the deeper the orange, the less stress the hen was under, but admittedly that sounds like an old wives’ tale.
I was there for snack time, which included chopped grapes and other fruit, and various greens. I even got to hold one of these lucky girls (it was more difficult than one would imagine).
I’m relieved we have a source of eggs from well-treated chickens, given the hellish lives of laying hens in factory farms. And backyard hens are sweeping the country. Take one bite of an egg from a well-raised hen, and it’s easy to see why.