Instructables

Real green eggs (and ham)

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Picture of real green eggs (and ham)
Green eggs and ham; You may be able to have them in a box and with a fox, but can you make them at home? Yes, you can!

With a clever bit of kitchen chemistry you can easily make your own green eggs, without any food colouring! The secret lies in a special pigment found in ordinary red cabbage, when cabbage juice is introduced to the alkaline egg whites the change in the pH causes the purple juice to turn a greenish-blue colour, it's completely harmless and produces a neat effect.

So for all you Dr.Seuss fans out there, get ready to have your favourite childhood story for breakfast.

Enough talk, let's make some green eggs (and ham), Sam I am!
 
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Step 1: Ingredients

Picture of ingredients
ingredients:
  • eggs
  • red cabbage
.
materials:
  • microwave
  • cheesecloth
  • mixing bowl

Step 2: Chop, nuke and squeeze that cabbage

With a sharp knife, coarsely chop about 2 cups of read cabbage.

Then, transfer cabbage into a microwave-safe bowl with lid and microwave on high for about 4-5 minutes. This will soften your cabbage and release the juices. After microwaving your cabbage will be very hot, allow to cool at room temperature or in the fridge until you can safely handle the cabbage.

When your microwaved cabbage has cooled, place the soft cabbage into a doubled sheet of cheesecloth. Gather the edges of your cheesecloth and squeeze the cabbage over a mixing bowl, collecting the purple cabbage juice.

Step 3: Separate egg

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The reaction occurs between the egg white and the cabbage juice, therefore you're going to need to separate the egg yolks from the white.

To separate egg yolks is easy: crack an egg over a bowl and carefully separate the shell into two halves without spilling any of the yolk (some of the white may fall into the bowl, that's alright). You should now have an open egg in one hand and an empty shell half in the other. Carefully pour the full egg into the empty shell, the yolk should pour out and rest on the empty shell and the egg white should fall into the bowl below. Continue pouring the egg back and forth between the egg shells until the yolk remains.
Keep yolk in a shell half and set aside for later.

Step 4: Combine egg white and cabbage juice

Picture of combine egg white and cabbage juice
Brainy member BrittLiv explains:
"Naturally, red cabbage has a colour somewhere between red and purple, depending on the pH-value of the soil it is growing in. This colour change occurs due to the pigment flavin, which belongs to a group of water soluble plant pigments called anthocyanins (For those of you, that don't know what the pH value refers to, it is the measure of the acidity (pH < 7) or basicity (pH > 7) of an aqueous solution).
In this Instructable, we are making use of the fact, that flavin is a natural pH indicator and that egg white has a pH value of about 8. These slightly alkaline condition result in a colour change to a blueish-green."


Previous, unclear science explanation:
The purple pigment in red cabbage is called anthocyanins and can change colour in response to changes in pH.
The acidity in red cabbage causes the pigmentation to be purplish, but when introduced to an alkaline condition (like the whites of eggs) changes to a blueish-green.


To make your own green eggs pour a small amount of the red cabbage juice into your bowl of egg white and gently whisk together, you should see a colour change almost immediately.

Step 5: Cook your eggs

Picture of cook your eggs
12.jpg
Time to cook some eggs.

Heat your range to a medium heat and lightly oil a frying pan. Pour your green egg whites into the pan, then gently add the yolk you set aside (you did save it, right?) onto the top of the cooking egg white. Cook egg to your desire.

Step 6: Serve

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02.jpg
I had so much fun making green eggs that I made my eggs two ways: sunny side up and scrambled. I'm sure this would also work if you wanted to make an omelet with them, too. Of course these eggs are completely safe to eat, so gobble them up!

I noticed a slight change in flavour in the eggs after adding the red cabbage juice, almost a sweet taste and not unpleasant. Though this might not be an everyday thing it sure is a fun twist on boring old eggs, give it a try!

Have fun!


Did you make your own green eggs? Post a picture of your version of this project in the comments below and earn yourself an eggy digital patch and a 3-month Pro membership to Instructables.com.
Hahaha best break fast in bed ever!!!!!!!
ChicaMia2 years ago
I understand the novelty, but why on earth is that egg so overcooked? It's burnt on the bottom!
I like my eggs like that.
mikeasaurus (author)  ChicaMia2 years ago
egg-cooking and photo-taking don't always go together.
Isn't the yolk supposed to be the green bit, there's the next challenge!
BrittLiv2 years ago
Sorry to be a smart ass, but the colour has to do with the pH value of the soil and not with the "acidity in red cabbage". That's why, depending on the region it can occur in different colours. Anthocyanins are actually a group of pigments.

Btw. here is a cool picture:
mikeasaurus (author)  BrittLiv2 years ago
If I read what you wrote correctly, then we agree that the colour change in the eggs is due to the change the anthocyanins' pH found in red cabbage.

The acidity may vary due to soil, but that's not really what this Instructable is all about. I'd be happy to edit any part of the science written here if you can clearly elaborate on exactly where I strayed.
Sorry, I should have been more clear, I was referring to this bit:

"The purple pigment in red cabbage is called anthocyanins and can change colour in response to changes in pH. The acidity in red cabbage causes the pigmentation to be purplish, but when introduced to an alkaline condition (like the whites of eggs) changes to a blueish-green."

I would write:

"Naturally red cabbage has a colour somewhere between red and purple, depending on the pH-value of the soil it is growing in. This colour change occurs due to the pigment flavin, which belongs to a group of water soluble plant pigments called anthocyanins (For those of you, that don't know what the pH value refers to, it is the measure of the acidity (pH < 7) or basicity (pH > 7) of an aqueous solution).
In this Instructable, we are making use of the fact, that flavin is a natural pH indicator and that egg white has a pH value of about 8. These slightly alkaline condition result in a colour change to a blueish-green."


Hope I could help
mikeasaurus (author)  BrittLiv2 years ago
It's science!(cited)
monsterlego2 years ago
I DO NOT LIKE THEM SAM I AM, I DO NOT LIKE GREEN EGGS AND HAM!!!!

Heh, good job. :)
nintendolou2 years ago
what about the ham? :O
Did you use food coloring for the ham?
dmiles22 years ago
I am sooooooo going to eat these in a box, with a fox!
lmnopeas2 years ago
Omg, how fun! Can't wait to try this!
depotdevoid2 years ago
Awesome, I didn't realize you could do that with cabbage. This reminds me of being a kid, my mom would make us green eggs and ham for breakfast every now and then . . . of course, she was just using food coloring.
sunshiine2 years ago
Love, love, love, it! Nice touch! Thanks for sharing. Enjoy the weekend!
Sunshiine
Cool, but a little strange, but so was Green Eggs and Ham!