Pasteurized Eggs: Can They Be Eaten Raw?

Pasteurized Eggs: Can They Be Eaten Raw?

Eggs are considered a staple of most diets around the world, including the Mediterranean Diet , because they are great sources of nutrients such as protein and B vitamins .

To decree their success also the extreme versatility that allows you to cook them in many different ways. If safety is ensured with cooking , the same cannot be said if they are eaten raw, either on their own or in recipes that use them in this way. Salmonella is often present in raw eggs , which together with other types of bacteria can cause food poisoning.

One way to avoid this problem is to opt for pasteurized eggs.

What are pasteurized eggs

Pasteurized eggs are not cooked but still raw eggs, safer than fresh ones because they undergo a process that allows them to be sterilized and cut off any potential growth of microbes.

Pasteurization involves heating them to a certain temperature for a certain period of time. Despite the heat they are not cooked and their appearance does not change because it is a technique designed only to reduce the risk of developing food poisoning.

Even the nutritional values ​​remain intact. Only bacteria such as Salmonella, very often present in raw eggs, are destroyed . It can therefore be said that pasteurization is an extremely important process and for this reason it is part of the majority of industrial processes involving the use of eggs.

How safe are pasteurized eggs

Many of the most popular egg-based recipes involve cooking but just as many have raw eggs among the ingredients. Perhaps the most famous is mayonnaise , but we must not forget various desserts such as zabaglione , meringues , tiramisu and many others.

Using fresh eggs it is impossible to be 100% sure of the absence of salmonella inside them and for this reason it is advisable to replace them with pasteurized eggs, which can always be said to be safe , provided they are kept at a temperature equal to or lower than 4° , so that all microbes present in raw eggs before pasteurization are also eliminated.

Pasteurized eggs can be used to prepare recipes that normally include raw eggs or part of them among the ingredients, because, as mentioned, the pasteurization process does not alter its shape and consistency.

When to Avoid Pasteurized Raw Eggs

If pasteurized raw eggs are handled and stored correctly, no one but people with egg allergies should avoid eating them. On the contrary, they can also be consumed by those who, more than others, should stay away from raw ones such as pregnant women, children and the elderly .

Beware , however, of pasteurized eggs that have been left out of the fridge for too long and at room temperature because in this case the risk of rapid growth of bacteria is very high.

Finally, when handling raw or pasteurized eggs, make sure you keep your workplace and your hands as clean as possible.

How to pasteurize eggs at home

  • Use a cooking thermometer and water and sugar .
  • If you want to pasteurize whole eggs , open them and pour the yolk and white into a bowl together with a little sugar and whisk them together. For 3 eggs you need about 50 grams of sugar.
  • In a separate saucepan, boil about 50 ml of water together with 100 g of sugar, until the temperature reaches 120°C. Continue for about 5 minutes and then remove the syrup from the heat.
  • Combine the two compounds by continuing to whisk the eggs until they are well blended.
  • Leave to cool and once they reach room temperature the eggs can be said to be pasteurized.

Since the poisonings deriving from the bacteria present in raw eggs can cause serious repercussions on the gastrointestinal tract, it is essential to choose pasteurized ones when preparing dishes that involve the raw use of this food .

On the market there are already packs containing yolks, or yolks or egg whites together, already pasteurized, but for those who prefer to avoid ready-made preparations, it is possible to pasteurize fresh eggs at home using this procedure.

This procedure can also be carried out on egg whites or yolks separately.

Given the presence of sugar, however, it is indicated only for the preparation of desserts.

If, on the other hand, pasteurized eggs are used to make savory recipes such as mayonnaise, the sugar can be replaced with oil or the bain-marie technique can be used .

In this case, beat the eggs with electric whisks in a bain-marie until they reach about 60 – 65°. At that temperature they are pasteurized but be careful not to exceed it, in order to avoid cooking them.



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