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197 × 120 × 17 mm
160 pages
56 illustrations, 47 in colour
01 Apr 2014
  • £11.99

Eggs A Global History Diane Toops

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? In Hindu scripture, the world began as an egg. Laid by a swan floating on the waters of chaos, after a year the egg split into silver and gold halves, with the silver becoming the earth and the gold transforming into the sky. Throughout history, the egg has taken on numerous meanings outside of the famous philosophical dilemma: it was used for curing the evil eye by the Mayans, as protection against lightning in Greece, and to signify rebirth in the Christian tradition. In Eggs, Diane Toops offers a fascinating tour of egg history and lore, looking at how the egg’s significance has represented the preoccupations of the cultures that consume it.

Many varieties of eggs, whether laid by chickens, geese, ducks, fish, ostriches or even alligators, have been eaten throughout history, and today hens’ eggs are an integral part of modern cuisine around the world. Eggs are now marketed as a health food, but there have been debates over their nutritional status. Filled with appetizing recipes and beguiling images, this book will enthral anyone with an interest in cuisine or cultural history.

Eggs is one of best in the wonderful Edible Series of food histories. It captures all the lore and history of the other volumes but also gives an excellent synopsis of the important industrial processing side of the egg . . .Toops even tackles the age-old, which came first question and concludes, to quote, We will probably never know for certain which came first, but an egg is an egg is an egg, and that is enough for us to know.’ — Ag Science Writer

‘Toops counters the bad press written about eggs with facts about its nutritional and health benefits. She also looks at other aspects from egg production and how eggs were used in the development of vaccines in 1931, to the belief that eggs acted as an aphrodisiac . . . It's hard to imagine how much there is to learn about this humble object . . . Diane Toops reaches deep into the topic extracting every last ounce of information . . . a definite gift for egg lovers everywhere.’ — Smallholder Magazine

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Until her death in 2012, Diane Toops was an award-winning journalist and the News and Trends editor for Food Processing magazine.

Introduction: Walking on Eggs
1. What is More Perfect than an Egg?
2. The History of Eggs
3. No Eggs, No Cuisine
4. Eggs in American Cuisine
5. Bringing Eggs to Market: Or, Handle with Care
6. Which Came First – the Chicken or the Egg?
7. Hatching the World from an Egg

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