Having been chosen to participate in a crepe recipe challenge, we were given a month supply of AH.MA.ZING heirloom eggs from Pete and Gerry's's organic egg farm in New Hampshire. When the gorgeous Marans and Ameraucana hen eggs showed up on my doorstep, I felt the need to actually taste them individually to see what the yolks look like and to determine if there is a flavor difference...
Marans hens hail from the central-western coast of France near La Rochelle in the Poitou region and the pure breeds aren't the easiest to come by here in the States. Interestingly, during my travels around France, I have ventured very close to Marans, but wasn't aware the region is well-known for it's medium-sized, hearty chickens, popular for their show-bird qualities, chocolate brown eggs (reportedly the darkest in the world), and delicious meat.
Ameraucana hens originate in America, but are related to the South American Araucana (easter eggers). The breed is recognized as having eight different color birds and the hens lay a lovely shade of pale tinted green-blue eggs. They are a large breed chicken and therefore lay larger eggs. (Note: slight size difference in my pictures).
I decided to sacrifice one egg from each batch in order to see and taste any differences. The brown egg (on the right) had a darker yolk and slightly darker white, while the yolk from the green egg (left) was larger and lighter. Both eggs stayed firm and held their shape while frying, and the yolks were hearty. I fried them in light olive oil, then taste tested the yolks (which were bright and flavorful). The visual differences were obvious even when cooked, but my taste buds couldn't discriminate a difference in flavor. I can, however, say they taste definitively better than most commercial eggs out there (don't get me started on that!)-- which is, of course, due to the organic diet Pete and Gerry's chickens are fed, combined with their healthy living conditions.
Happy hens = delicious eggs.
And proof was in the pudding-- or should I say, on a lovely bit of baguette.
This made for an eggcellent prelude to the impending crepe competition.