Monday, July 2, 2007

Buffet Eggs...

Two words that, while seperately envoke warm feelings of joy, when paired send shivers down the spine of even the most careless dining room patron.

As my close associates can attest to, the biggest "hangup" I have about food is the texture. Buffet eggs not only have a texture (this I can deal with), it's the SOUND of the eggs... that wet, slithery, squishy noise as you dip the monster spoon into the silver chalice of 'henfruit' to select the perfect serving. If you MUST partake of buffet eggs, I've provided a photo guide here of areas to watch out for.
a) the buffet egg puddle: self explanatory yellow liquid. Is it raw egg, or the ratio of egg to milk (or whatever secret liquid they add) that refuses to congeal under heat of the stove or the sterno?
b) glistening parts: you can just hear them when you see this picture. Work the spoon avoiding the glistening areas, around to the dry parts in the upper mountainous regions of the egg pile.

These photos were taken on my recent trip to Atlanta (see June's fondue posting), and I had a chance to eat several days worth of buffet eggs in my quest to conquer my fears. I had to take a photo of the spoon, of course, as it sits with the egg slime resting in it, as if to say "the end".

Lastly, I have to share the most fascinating scrambled egg delivery method and shape I've ever seen. At the Hartsfeld-Jackson airport Terminal C restaurant, I ordered the old "two egg" special. Most people know what two eggs look like - fairly traditional, little cloud-like pile of eggs stacked neatly on each other, next to things like hash browns or home fries and some breakfast meat on a plate.

When this little treat arrived, I shrieked in joy as I couldn't tell if it was eggs, very yellow mashed potatoes, or hot yellow ice cream. How on earth did they get it to hold a scoop shape, and served in a little bowl? Ingenious!

P.S. When it Atlanta, choose biscuits every chance you get.


HoppyC1 said...

While not as traveled as regularly, I have encountered yet another version of the yellow food matter: the SOLID buffet eggs — the ones left behind for too long and the steam line having solidified them and made them into a form of artist's medium.

They come in flat, mound, or mountainous shapes and volume. The yellow stuff is sometimes not very well "incorporated", so there may be the little white stringy things sort of hangin' out there in the yellow sea, like some little islands, or some artifacts in the layers of sediment in the hills of the desert on the other side of Barstow — not where you might expect to find them, nor especially easily identifiable.

"Eating" them is another matter. You just realized how much you paid [or will be paying] and try to cut them to consume them. They do not cut easily, but like the butter which has been in the cold refrigerator — not too hard, but not soft either. Even the flat ones offer resistance and make you wonder if they are alive, or just made their final statement to the world by becoming hard and difficult.

Enough said [well, maybe too much] but the post reminded me of my experiences and the texture. Taste is another matter...

Sandy said...

Hate to admit it, but I love buffet eggs, especially the ones from Shoney's. You're dead on about everything dealing with texture and consistency, but I grew up with these, so it just isn't a surprise to see ice-cream-scoop eggs on my breakfast tray. By the way, the secret to most buffet eggs is that they're made from powdered eggs. In fact, I just ordered my first can to try and recreate these bad boys in my own kitchen. What can I say? I'm sick.