Before modern refrigeration people had to figure out how to preserve eggs for long term storage. Modern day egg production is required to follow the USDA requirements and have to be power washed with soap and water. Therefore the natural coating is washed off and the egg can go bad faster (some say within 4 hours) if left out.
Farm fresh eggs are a different animal though if you handle them properly and do not scrub or rub them the natural coating stays intact and they can be kept out for longer periods of time. I would not go beyond a week or so before refrigerating them but, some report that they can go a month or so. Not sure i would go that far myself however.
So, what did they do prior to refrigeration? Which is something we want to know because if the power grid were to go down or you are living off the grid we would not have refrigeration.
Here is a list of 6 preservation techniques that were used prior to refrigeration from the 18th century all the way up to early 20th century when refrigeration became more common in most households.
- Preserved in salt or salt brine
- Preserved in Wheat Bran
- Covering the Eggs with shellac or varnish and wrapped in paper
- Coat in butter or rendered animal fat
- Covered in wood ashes
- Covered in a slaked lime solution
Note: These are listed from the least effective to the most effective solutions.
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