|Red eggs sold in public market|
The fresh duck eggs are individually dipped in the mixture, and packed in paper-lined wooden boxes. The batch is then lightly covered with papers to slow down the dehydration process.
The eggs are stored indoors at room temperature over the next 12 to 14 days to cure. This way the salt can equalize with the egg’s permeable membrane through a natural process called osmosis. Curing can last up to 18 days. The result of curing is a long-lasting egg that can have a shelf life of up to 40-days.
After the two-week curing period, the eggs are hand-cleaned with water and boiled in low heat for 30 minutes. Time is measured from the first moment the water boils and the immersion of the eggs. An improvised dipping lattice fashioned from fish net is use to enfold the eggs while immersed in the boiling vat. Similarly, through this means the eggs can be easily hauled from the vat after boiling time lapses. The vat is usually large to contain the batch and the amount of water must be proportionate enough to swathe the entire batch.
After the boiling process, the egg white becomes salty, the yolk turns orange, and the flavor is rich, fatty, but less salty.
|Itlog Na Pula|
Red Egg or Itlog Na Pula in Tagalog is distinctly dyed red to distinguish them from the fresh and raw duck eggs.
Based on nutritional studies abroad, one salted duck egg yolk weighing about 70 grams contains 359 milligram of cholesterol. The recommended daily intake for a healthy diet should be less than 300 milligram per day. If taken regularly, there will be a greater risk of elevating blood cholesterol level.
Century egg, also known as Hundred-year Egg, Thousand-year Egg, Thousand-year-old Egg, or Millennium Egg, is a preserved egg dish. It originated from China and was always part of Chinese cuisine ingredient.
Century egg is made by preserving duck, chicken or quail eggs in a mixture of clay, ash, salt, lime, and rice hulls for several weeks to several months, depending on the method of processing.
|Coated with Caustic Mixture|
The yolk is transformed to a dark green to grey color, with a creamy consistency and a pungent odor, while the white becomes dark brown, translucent jelly with little flavor. During the curing process, the alkaline substance of the egg becomes the transforming agent which gradually increases the pH level of the egg.
Century eggs can be eaten without further preparation, on their own or as a side dish. Some Philippine households cut them up into small chunks and cook them with rice porridge.
|A sliced-up Century Egg|
Picture Credit: http://www.odditycentral.com/