Eggs are very delicate. It may take only a night of unfavorable conditions and just like that you cannot enjoy your eggs as planned. They have to be handled with care in how they are carried and the conditions under which they are kept. This is because eggs can easily break or go bad.
Eggs are a great source of protein as well as carbohydrates. If you are having a long day and want to have that breakfast that will make you full for a longer period of time, eggs are definitely a go to. They make you have a feeling of satisfaction within a few bites.
You can also have eggs in different ways: boiled, scrambled, omelet or added to other meals or pastry. You might sometimes find yourself in a situation whereby you have gone to the store and decided to buy some eggs for the next day’s breakfast meal, get to the car and, as you are getting into the house, forget the eggs in the car.
The next morning, as you are preparing your breakfast, you are probably worried that you left your eggs at the store only to check in the car and find them lying in the back seat. They were there all night. You probably may begin wondering whether it is safe or not to go ahead and prepare them for your breakfast.
It is important to take this into consideration because there is a chance that the conditions in your car that night were not very favorable to maintain its freshness. Also, there are chances that your eggs might just have been spared, if they hadn’t been previously stored in a fridge or washed before being sold.
Food safety risks associated with leaving eggs outside at room temperature for a long period of time
Eggs require to be kept under a certain temperature if stored for long periods of time. Room temperature is a comfortable temperature that lies between 20 and 25 degrees Celsius. It means that it is neither too hot nor too cold. Leaving your eggs out at room temperature for long periods of time can, however, pose a food safety risk. It is not advisable to leave your eggs under these conditions for more than two hours. Some of the risks are:
- Infestation by pathogens. When eggs are left out at room temperature they are more prone to infestation by pathogens like salmonella. The egg will sweat and give room for the infestation. Bacteria are more likely to multiply under room temperature. Hence, your egg is more likely to go bad. Salmonella causes diarrhea, vomiting and may even lead to fever.
- Compromise of nutritional value. Eggs that have been left out at room temperature for a long time are likely to slowly dry out. Hence, they may not provide the nutrients that they are supposed to, since they may have been depleted. The albumen may also lose its weight, which means there has been a significant loss of water in the egg.
- Affects the Yolk ph. When an egg is stored for a long time, there is a continuous loss of carbon dioxide from the egg. This may make the pH of the egg increase, which means that the egg is more alkaline than it should be, which may trigger an increase in pH release by your stomach and ultimately affect the digestive system.
How Temperature Affects the Safety of Eggs
How long an egg will last after you have purchased it depends on a number of factors. For the first few days, you may not notice any significant difference. One of the very important factors to consider is how you store it, that is. The temperature is high, cool or low. There are a number of ways either high or low temperatures may affect the safety of an egg.
It is recommended that if the egg has been cleaned and refrigerated before the purchase, that you maintain similar conditions for its preservation. Storing the egg under low temperatures is of benefit to the egg .It helps to protect it from bacteria. Low temperatures serve to kill bacteria. Storing the egg under low temperatures will protect it from a prospective attack by the salmonella bacteria. This may promote the life of the egg, so it can last longer. The low temperature will also ensure that the quality of the egg has been maintained.
On the downside, if an egg is stored under low temperatures, and a blackout that lasts long occurs, the egg is at risk of going bad.
To ensure that your eggs are still safe in the event that you have left them out in your car, it is important to ensure that you do not remove them from the initial packaging that you bought the eggs in. You could have the air conditioner on to ensure a cool temperature as you transport the eggs.
Tips To Ensure That Eggs Have Been Stored Safely To Prevent Them From Spoiling
There are key standards that you need to ensure you have met so that you can have your eggs for a longer period of time. These are
- Store the egg in its original package. It is important that you do not transfer the eggs as the storage box may help to protect it from attracting possible bacteria that may cause it to go bad.
- Keep away from foods with strong smell. Keeping eggs with foods that may have a pungent smell may lower its quality since it is prone to absorbing the smell and changing its flavor.
- Avoid storing the eggs at the door of the refrigerator. Storing eggs at the door of the fridge exposes them to a fluctuation of temperature. This may allow bacteria to thrive.
- If storing the eggs out of the shell, ensure that you have kept them in an airtight container and have added some salt to the mixture.
- Ensure that you have stored the eggs in a cool dry place before cleaning the eggs for refrigeration.
It is possible to have stored an egg properly and still have it go bad. The key things that may indicate a spoilt egg are:
- A spoiled egg will have an unusual smell. It is likened to the smell of raw ammonia.
- The color of the egg white and yolk. Once you break the egg, you need to pay attention to the color of the egg yolk. If either of them have discolored, then the egg has gone bad.
- The weight of the egg. You may need to carry out a floating test on the egg. If the egg remains floating on the surface of the water, it is likely to be spoilt. This is so because of the air cell that will form at the bottom of the egg.
- The consistency of the yolk. As compared to a spoilt egg, the yolk of a fresh egg will be firm when broken.
After leaving the eggs overnight in the car, before cooking them, it is important that you check for any sign of going bad. Inspect the eggs properly and in case any of the eggs has cracked, throw it away as it may affect the quality of the rest of the eggs. If it has none of the indicators that it has gone bad. You may just have been lucky. Cook the egg and enjoy your meal!
Hi all! I’m Cora Benson, and I’ve been blogging about food, recipes and things that happen in my kitchen since 2019.