Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Itlog na Pula: What's in This Filipino Red Egg?

These colored eggs are called itlog na pula (it-LOG means egg, na means that, and pu-La means red). The undiscerning might ask: what's in this Filipino red egg?

If the Chinese have the century egg, the Filipinos have their own version of the preserved or salted egg. However, this is not your ordinary chicken egg. Itlog na pula are made from duck eggs. These ducks are not the white ones but the colored ones specially bred for the production of itlog na pula, and also another exotic Filipino food, the dreaded balut.

Because of the process of making itlog na pula which discolors the outer shell, it is by tradition dyed a red color.

Since its shelf life lasts only for about four weeks and doesn't last very long, itlog na pula is exported to countries such as Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Peninsula, Bahrain and the Trust Territory in the Pacific Islands, but further research by specialized agencies such as the Institute of Animal Science at the University of the Philippines-Los BaƱos, Laguna, Philippines, are finding ways to further extend the goodness of the tasty itlog na pula.

To prepare, just crack open the red shell covering and slice the hard-boiled egg content into mini bite sizes. Cut up same sized raw onions and tomatoes and they are now ready to be eaten, your very own appetizer of itlog na pula.

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