7th Oct 2021 | Food
I’m prone to musing. Letting the mind gently mull over the big questions that have challenged mankind since the dawn of time, a few centuries, or possibly just emerged this morning.
For example, how did keep off the grass signs get there? Why does time seem to go by faster when we get older? Are zebras black or white?
Thankfully as we celebrate World Egg Day evolutionary biology has given us an answer to one of the oldest of previously unanswerable questions –what came first?
The chicken or the egg?
Whilst the masses have simply seen eggs as delicious and nutritious, philosophers from Aristotle onwards have found deep meaning in the causality dilemma posed by the chicken and egg paradox, often concluding that solving this cause and effect riddle would truly reveal the meaning of life.
In fact, thanks to evolutionary biology, the answer is now well known, though the meaning of life is still open to debate.
The egg came first – about 312 million years ago. Chickens in comparison are, well, spring chickens; having emerged a mere 8,000 years ago in South Asia.
In between humans have developed a taste for eggs whether they come from fish (roe) or birds – and sometimes reptiles!
You just can’t beat an egg – unless you like them scrambled of course.
So now we have solved that centuries old conundrum, let us reflect on a few other fascinating facts about what is possibly the most versatile food on the planet.
The tall white hat that chef’s wear is known as a toque. It has up to 100 pleats with each one said to represent a different dish you can make with an egg.
Most chicken eggs have white or brown shell though taste exactly the same. If you want to know what colour eggs a chicken will produce then look at its ear lobes, white for white eggs, red for brown.
We all know about the goose that laid the golden egg, but in 1806 Yorkshire woman Mary Bateman claimed to have the world’s first chicken that could lay eggs that predicted the future.
Passers-by paid a shilling a time and watched in awe as her chicken laid an egg on which was written a message – usually along the lines of prepare for the second coming.
Her money making scheme was scuppered when a local doctor spotted her secretly shoving handwritten eggs back up the unfortunate bird.
Bateman herself took up medicine but was hanged for poisoning patients.
If you want to know whether an egg has gone bad place it in a glass of water. If it sinks and lies on a side it’s good. If it’s bad it will float due to large air cells that form.
For another guarantee of quality, you can have faith in Zorba. Any eggs we use, as with other ingredients, have to satisfy our robust supplier assurance programme which means we can track our ingredients from field to factory.
So, we can tell you ‘egg-axctly’ where the eggs come from which we used in our egg mayonnaise deli filler, so you don’t need to go the ‘egg-stra’ mile to find out.