Water Glassing Eggs

egg preservation method

Believe me, I was just as skeptical as you are. Preserving eggs in a milky solution for how long? And then you expect me to eat said egg? I’m not even sure I like eggs that much.  

Well I’m here to tell you, it works! We decided to test water glassing eggs as a preservation method, placing them in a crock on October 20th, 2019. And today, we pulled them out to find perfectly, consumable eggs.  

crock of eggs in pickling lime solution for 1 year

So let’s get some facts straight. To water glass is to preserve using sodium silicate and often times commercial forms are mixed with potassium. This method is considered the most cost effective and chemically pure. However, when looking up how to water glass eggs you’ll commonly find people using lime, which is calcium hydroxide. You’ll find this lime called various things like slacked lime, hydrated lime or pickling lime.

I’m taking a wild guess that the transition to lime progressed over time. Sodium silicate may be chemically pure, but I’m sure the fact that its used as an industrial solution and bonding agent in things like cement, may freak some people out. While lime is a more common product found on the homestead from First Saturday Lime in your coop, to the pickling lime in your canning cupboard.  Just a guess though… 

raw top egg fresh from november 11, 2019, bottom egg placed in crock october 20, 2018

For my simple test, I used the pickling lime and small crock I already had on hand. For preserving larger quantities you can purchase hydrated lime at your local hardware store, and use a larger crock or a food grade 5 gallon bucket with lid. Find out how we pick-up free, food grade buckets in our maple syrup post here!

Mix Lime Water

In a clean crock, container or bucket mix your lime solution using a ratio of 1 ounce (by weight) pickling lime to 1 quart of water.

Place Eggs

Once your lime water is mixed, you’ll want to place clean, unwashed eggs into your container of choice point end down, just as you would in a egg carton. It’s important that you use clean unwashed eggs, with the bloom intact, meaning store bought eggs will not work for this preservation method. If you purchase your eggs from a local farm or homestead, you can certainly ask for unwashed eggs. 

Cover and Store

After all of your eggs have been carefully placed, your container needs covered to reduce evaporation. For my crock, I placed a piece of plastic wrap with a rubber band, then draped with a hand towel. For other food safe containers or buckets place a lid on top. Store your eggs in a cool, dark place. It’s important as with most preservation methods to avoid drastic temperature fluctuation and direct sunlight.

cooked top egg from october 20, 2018, bottom egg november 11, 2019

Now hurry up and wait! Throughout this preservation process I thought it was important to note there is no smell from the crock or eggs themselves. The eggs feel and look the same as a fresh egg. The longer we preserved them the waterier the whites, but the yolk impressively held it’s shape raw and cooked. Lastly, when it came down to the burning question of taste – there was no difference!

We found that eggs are best between 6-8 months, but we’ve successfully stored them for over a year. Water glassing eggs is the perfect preservation method to get you through the fall molt and desolate winter season. You can pull eggs from the solution at any time to consume. Simply rinse the lime water solution from them, crack and enjoy!

Have you tried the water glassing egg preservation method? Do you plan to? Let us know in the comments below!

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