1000 Year Old Eggs?


The other day everyone’s favorite historian, Chris Bacon, turned my attention to a certain menu item at an Ann Arbor eating establishment that got my interest.  If you don’t know Mr. Bacon, here he is wearing a neck accessory:


At TK WU on E. Liberty in Ann Arbor, they are selling a dish called Congee with 1000 year Egg & Pork. A thousand year old egg?  How is this possible?

Thankfully, my possibly inaccurate friends over at Wikipedia had me covered:

Century egg, also known as preserved egg, hundred-year egg, thousand-year egg, and thousand-year-old egg, is a Chinese cuisine ingredient made by preserving duck, chicken, or quail in mixture of clay, ash, salt, lime, and rice straw for several weeks to several months, depending on the method of processing. After the process is completed, the yolk becomes a dark green, cream-like substance with a strong odor of sulfur and ammonia, while the white becomes a dark brown, transparent jelly with little flavor or taste. The transforming agent in the century egg is its alkaline  material, which gradually raises the pH of the egg from around 9 to 12 or more. This chemical process breaks down some of the complex, flavorless proteins and fats, which produces a variety of smaller flavorful compounds.

Here’s what one of these bad boys looks like cut in half:

I’m pretty sure you will see me eat one of these in the near future.  The whole thing seems absolutely disgusting, but I’m just not one to let the opportunity to eat a spoiled egg that is considered a delicacy slip away.  It’s right down the road!