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All they’re cracked up to be

Scrambled eggs and mushrooms.

Food styling/Sheryl Julian and Valerie Ryan; Dinal Rudick/Globe staff

Scrambled eggs and mushrooms.

Eggs are available year round, even in chilly New England, but they seem like the first food of the growing season. Perhaps it’s because they’re on holiday tables this time of year (for their symbolism of rebirth, fertility, and more), and for days, even weeks, afterward, fridges are full of egg cartons and skillets hit the stovetop morning, noon, and night.

For years eggs had very little flavor because the hens that laid them were confined, rather than scratching around in the dirt. Today you can find egg farmers who handle hens with care, letting them run around a yard and eat well, until their eggs produce golden, sometimes orange, yolks and delicate whites.

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Some people think of eggs as the perfect portable protein. Others see them as ingredients in baked goods. But you can also make eggs the star of a dish.

Scramble a bowlful and stir in sauteed mushrooms, add them to a simmering, highly seasoned tomato sauce to make the popular North African shakshuka, or take the hard-cooked eggs off your holiday table and turn them into tuna-stuffed rounds.

If it happens that you have too many eggs on hand, you’re in luck.

Sheryl Julian can be reached at julian@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @sheryljulian.
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