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4 recipe ideas for farm-fresh eggs

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner selections from “The Farmstead Egg Guide & Cookbook.”

TIP All of the recipes were tested with fresh eggs from my hens, and the egg sizes vary. A standard supermarket “large” egg is 2 ounces, and I specify that size in the recipes. Pictured, bombay scrambled eggs.

Photograph by Jim Scherer / Styling by Catrine Kelty

TIP All of the recipes were tested with fresh eggs from my hens, and the egg sizes vary. A standard supermarket “large” egg is 2 ounces, and I specify that size in the recipes. Pictured, bombay scrambled eggs.

I began keeping hens in my suburban yard almost two decades ago — well before the backyard chicken trend. In 2006, I wrote the Farmstead Egg Cookbook, and now I’m pleased to offer this expanded version. A joy of cooking with eggs is seeing their transformation from basic to spectacular, and this is especially evident when using truly fresh eggs laid by content hens. They really do “stand up,” and their flavor matches their consistency. For a recipe like Bombay Scrambled Eggs, it means that even with the spices, the eggs still star.

BOMBAY SCRAMBLED EGGS

Serves 4

Scrambled eggs don’t have to be plain or eaten only at breakfast. In India, scrambled eggs are studded with onions, herbs, and spices. I’ve specified jalapeno peppers here because they are moderately spicy and are easy to find in the market, but you can use other fresh hot chili peppers. Try these in a pita pocket.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 cup chopped onion

1 garlic clove, minced

6 large eggs

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon ground cumin

1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

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Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet or well-seasoned cast-iron pan over low heat. Saute the onion and garlic until very soft and golden. In a bowl, whisk the eggs, salt, black pepper, cumin, and jalapeno together. Pour this into the skillet. Stir and cook until the eggs are firm but not dry. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the cilantro. Serve, garnished with the remaining cilantro.

VEGETABLE FRIED RICE

Serves 2

Scrambled eggs are an essential ingredient in fried rice. This version is just right for a light supper. For a heartier meal, in the final step, add ½ cup diced cooked chicken, ham, or shrimp, or all three. The best rice for fried rice is cooked rice that has cooled and dried out a bit. Leftover rice from a Chinese restaurant is ideal.

4 cups cooked white rice

3 large eggs

2 teaspoons dry sherry

¼ cup chopped scallions

1 rib celery, chopped

¼ cup diced carrot

1 cup peas (thawed if frozen)

1 cup diced vegetables of your choice

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon soy sauce

Separate the rice grains with your fingers and set aside in a bowl. In a small bowl, mix the eggs and sherry until combined. Place the scallions, celery, carrot, peas, and diced vegetables in another bowl.

Heat a wok or a large skillet over medium heat. Pour in 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the eggs and stir constantly until scrambled and broken into small lumps. Stir in the rice and cook until the eggs and rice are evenly distributed. Increase the heat, add the remaining oil, and add the vegetables, salt, pepper, and soy sauce. Cook until the vegetables are just cooked and heated through.

PICKLED BEETS AND EGGS

Serves 6 to 12

Eggs don’t get any prettier than this. The whites absorb the beet juice and turn purple, and yet the yolks remain bright yellow. Add pickled eggs to a green salad or serve them quartered with the beets as part of an antipasto plate.

6 to 12 large eggs, hard-cooked and peeled

8 small beets, cooked, peeled, and quartered, or 1 15-ounce can whole beets, drained

1½ cups apple cider vinegar

1½ cups water

2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

½ red onion, sliced

Place the eggs and beets in a glass container or jar with a tight-fitting lid. Place the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to lukewarm. Pour the contents of the pot over the eggs and beets. Refrigerate for at least 1 day. Eat within 2 weeks.

EGG, POTATO, AND TUNA SALAD

Serves 4

This sturdy salad is good as a main course at home, or take it to work for a brown-bag lunch. Although waxy potatoes, such as Yukon golds, hold together well in salads, leftover baked russets can be used in a pinch. This is a recipe to get creative with; steamed broccoli and asparagus are good add-ins. In the springtime, I’ll add a large handful of fresh spinach. Water-packed solid albacore tuna is acceptable here, although oil-packed tuna has more flavor. Canned salmon is also a good option.

8 ounces small new potatoes (red or white)

4 large eggs, hard-cooked, peeled, and quartered

1 6-ounce can tuna, drained

1 rib celery, chopped

¼ cup chopped red onion or scallion

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon minced fresh dill

1 teaspoon grated

lemon zest

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing:

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon coarse mustard

1 teaspoon granulated sugar

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and boil the potatoes until just tender. Let cool, then cut into quarters. Put the potatoes and eggs in a bowl. Flake the tuna and add to the bowl. Gently mix these ingredients. Add the celery, onion, parsley, dill, and lemon zest, and toss gently. Add the salt and pepper, and stir once more.

Whisk the dressing ingredients together until well blended. Pour over the salad and toss to coat.

Reprinted with permission from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt fromThe Farmstead Egg Guide & Cookbook, by Terry Golson. Copyright 2014. Send comments to cooking@globe.com.

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