Cured egg yolks are salty with a BIG umami flavor. This food dates back to fifth-century China, and is perfect for grating on top of dishes.

cured egg yolks

While these egg yolks take about 2 weeks to cure, there’s really very minimal hands on time. I like to make these after I’ve made recipes that only call for the whites (like meringue or pavlovas, or even just an egg white omelet). It’s a great way to use up your yolks instead of throwing them out!

Cured egg yolks are great on top of a lot of different recipes. They’re also perfect if you like parmesan cheese on top of salad or pasta but are lactose intolerant.

How To Cure Egg Yolks

Pour 1 cup (135 g) of kosher salt into a 9×13 inch glass or ceramic baking dish. Using an egg or the back of a spoon, make 10 indentions in the salt, each one big enough for an egg yolk to sit in. Once you’ve made all the indentions, carefully crack the eggs and gently scoop out the yolks (being careful not to break them) and place a yolk in each indention. (Save the whites for another recipe.) Gently cover the yolks with the remaining salt. Place the entire dish in the fridge for 5 days.

After 5 days, break through the salt to remove the yolks. At this stage, they will be solid but a little sticky. The salt coagulates the yolk to make it solid, but the drying time will finish off that process. Go ahead and rinse any remaining salt off them so they are clean.

Lay each yolk, evenly spacing them, along a skinny piece of cheesecloth (approximately 6 x 20 inches or 15 x 51 cm or so). Fold the cheesecloth over twice widthwise to enclose the yolks in a long tube and then tie a piece of kitchen string between each yolk.

Hang in a dry, cool place for 1 week. I hang mine in a closet. At the end of the week, all you have to do is unwrap the yolks and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month.

cured egg yolks

FAQs and tips!

What do I use cured egg yolks for?

I have several recipes in my cookbook that I use cured egg yolks in, but it’s also delicious on top of salad, pasta, or anywhere you want a sprinkly of salty, almost cheesy flavor.

Do I have to make exactly 10?

Absolutely not! You can make a full dozen or just a couple if you’re trying this recipe out for the first time.

Curing egg yolks has been around since 5th century china!

More Elevated Ingredients

Cured Egg Yolks

Prep Time 5 minutes
Chilling/Curing Time 12 days
Total Time 12 days 5 minutes

Equipment

  • Glass or ceramic baking dish 9×13 inches
  • Cheese cloth 6×20 inches
  • Kitchen string

Ingredients

  • 2 cups kosher salt
  • 10 egg yolks

Instructions

  • Pour 1 cup (135 g) of kosher salt into 9×13 inch glass or ceramic baking dish. Using an egg or the back of a spoon, make 10 indentions in the salt, each one big enough for an egg yolk to sit in. Carefully crack the eggs and place an unbroken yolk in each indention. Save the egg whites for another recipe.
  • Gently cover the yolks with remaining 1 cup salt. Place the entire dish in the fridge for 5 days.
  • Break through the salt to remove the yolks. They will be solid but a little sticky. The curing will finish the solidifying process. Rinse any remaining salt off of the yolks.
  • Space each yolk evenly each yolk along a skinny piece of cheesecloth (approximately 6 x 20 inches or 15 x 51 cm or so). Fold the cheesecloth over twice widthwise to enclose the yolks in a long tube. Tie a piece of kitchen string between each yolk.
  • Hang in a dry, cool place (like a pantry or closet) for 1 week. After one week, unwrap the yolks. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month. They can easily be grated with a cheese grater when you are ready to use.

Notes

  1. You can make however many you want using this exact method. Sometimes I like to make just a couple! 
  2. Use as you would parmesan cheese or on anything you want a big umami flavor on.

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