The difference is simple: white eggs are laid by hens from a white-feathered breed, such as White Leghorn, while brown eggs are laid by hens from a larger, red-feathered breed, such as Rhode Island Red.
Free-range refers to eggs from hens raised cage-free, either outside or with daily access to the outdoors.
Free-run refers to eggs from hens raised cage-free, but kept indoors.
Organic eggs are laid by hens restricted to feed free of commercial fertilizers, fungicides, herbicides and pesticides and are labelled “organic.”
Omega-3 eggs are laid by hens consuming feed that is 10 to 20 per cent flaxseed. These contain higher levels of both polyunsatured fat and omega-3 fatty acids than regular eggs.
The nutrient content of all these eggs, omega-3 excepted, is the same.
How to cook eggs
Use this guide for four servings of poached, sunny-side up and over-easy eggs, based on one egg per person. Count on two eggs per person if the eggs are scrambled.
Poached eggs: Pour water into large deep skillet to depth of 2 inches (5 cm); add 1 tsp (5 mL) white vinegar and bring to simmer over medium heat. One at a time, break 4 eggs into small dish and slide into water; poach until white is set and yolk is desired doneness, about 3 minutes for slightly runny yolk. Remove with slotted spoon and blot bottom of spoon on towel.
Sunny-side up eggs: In large nonstick skillet, melt 2 tsp (10 mL) butter over medium heat. Crack 4 eggs into skillet; fry just until whites are set, about 3 minutes.
Over-easy eggs: Same as sunny-side up but fry until whites are set, then turn over and fry just until white film forms over yolks, about 30 seconds.
Scrambled eggs: Whisk together 8 eggs; 1/4 cup (50 mL) milk; 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper. In large nonstick skillet, melt 2 tsp (10 mL) butter over medium heat. Add egg mixture; cook over medium-low heat until beginning to set. Gently draw spatula across bottom of pan to form large soft curds; cook, stirring, until thickened and moist but no liquid remains, about 3 minutes.
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