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Time to plan an egg-based meal

The price is dropping, and cheap protein is a real budget-booster.

By Donna_Freedman Apr 1, 2011 7:55AM

The Grocery Outlet recently sent out a flier with the following coupon: 18 medium eggs for free, no purchase necessary. You can see where this is going.

Yep: I walked up to "the Gross-Out," as it's lovingly known -- it's actually a swell place to find discount and "overrun" foods -- and strolled back home with a dozen and a half gratis cackleberries. Since then I've had egg salad for lunch, scrambled eggs and a bagel and cream cheese for supper, and a couple of hard-boiled eggs for snacks.

And when I run out, no worries: The egg sales have started.  Post continues after video.

I'm seeing them as low as 99 cents per dozen even though Easter isn't until April 24. That's some awfully cheap protein. Isn't it time to plan a few egg-based meals?

A dozen eggs could feed a family of four when served with toast and fried potatoes or hash browns. Breakfast for dinner is fun.

Create omelets or frittatas with whatever veggies you have on hand, sautéed until they caramelize, plus whatever else is in the fridge: salsa, a bit of cheese, diced cooked meat (especially bacon). Add a side salad and some fresh fruit and you have a nice light lunch or supper.

My scrambled-egg sandwiches are pretty amateur, but a dish like shaksouka might get me out of my lazy-cook rut. This Israeli dish of eggs poached in "a subtly spicy tomato sauce" is easy to make and also an excuse to wipe your plate with some good bread, according to Kris at Cheap Healthy Good.

An international flavor
The blog's collection of egg recipes includes dishes as simple as broccoli quiche and breakfast burritos, and as fancy-schmancy as Golden Delight Egg Salad (with shallot and fresh parsley) and Spaghetti With Asparagus, Egg and Parmesan: A Mutant Freak of Deliciousness (needs no egg-splanation).

You'll also see photographic evidence of the time she cracked two eggs in a row that had double yolks. The odds against that were so startling that Kris decided to play the lottery. She didn't win. But the eggs were delicious.

Over at Kirbie's Cravings is a recipe for Fried Bacon Eggs, based on a dish the blogger found at a diner. It's made of shelled soft-boiled eggs rolled in bread crumbs and crumbled bacon, then pan-fried. The outside is crunchy but you still get a soft yolk.

Martha Stewart's Everyday Food Blog has a recipe for Spanish Tortilla, a thick omelet made of cooked potatoes and eggs. Despite its name, it contains no tortillas. In Spain they eat it warm or at room temperature, and even make sandwiches out of it.

Here are a few other potential del-egg-cacies, both main dish and snack-oriented:
Try these recipes or use a search engine to find even more adventurous dishes. Food prices will keep going up, so take advantage of cheap protein while it's still cheap.

One more thing: You can freeze eggs. The National Center for Home Food Preservation offers instructions. Hint: Don't freeze them in the shell.

More from MSN Money:

Apr 7, 2011 4:03PM
Another timely article! Protein is expensive and after talking to my "meat guy" at the grocery's probably gonna get worse as we continue to use corn for fuel instead of food.. Cheapest I can find red meat from a cow  is for $1.99 a pound at Safeway on sale. So these eggs at $1.25 a dozen...quite a bargain. Just a side note, last week I picked up a dozen eggs for DM. She had requested large eggs but for another 8 cents I purchased her "extra large" which were HUGE. EVERYONE of them...all twelve.... was a "double-yoker"! Maybe I should have played the lottery...LOL.
Apr 2, 2011 9:57AM
I agree that we should take advantage of such a cheap healthy protein.  When I use eggs as the main part of a meal, I buy the best ones I can as they usually taste better.  I wrote a post called Ode to the Egg,  We often have breakfast for dinner especially huevos rancheros.

I love the idea of freezing eggs in portion sized containers.  You can even separate the whites so you have egg whites always on hand. 

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