Ostrich Egg Alchemy

I did it. I got the egg. And it's big, a freak show, about 3 1/4 lbs. But I don't want the ostrich egg to just be a freak show. I want it to be delicious. Because I love deliciousness, and also because three pounds of novelty egg would be hard to get rid of. It must taste good.

How to make sure that I cook an ostrich egg properly, and make something lovely to eat from it? Start with a little ostrich egg science, which I learned by asking food science guru Harold McGee.

I thought that boiling the ostrich egg would make for a thrilling presentation (imagine! Like a huge roast!), and also give me a host of options for how to prep the cooked egg. Harold McGee explained in an email that to boil an ostrich egg, "the cooking time will depend on how big the egg is. If it's about 1500 grams, then the cooking time will be about 8.3 times the cooking time for a 60-gram (large) chicken egg."

I already had dizzying respect for Dr.McGee, but when I did the metric conversion for the weight of my egg and it came in at 1474 grams, it made my heart thump. Okay, 8.3 it is.

How he arrived at this equation, I'm not sure. I tried to access any dim memory of algebra, but I must have skipped the ostrich algebra day. The ostrich egg is 25 times the size of a large chicken egg (I guess I attended ostrich arithmetic day), and 8.3 is one third of 25, but that's where my calculations end. And that's why I'm leaving the calculation up to the expert. 8.3 times, or in the neighborhood of 83-90 minutes. Exact times to follow. Sharpen your egg spoons, because I'm serving this egg tomorrow night.

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