Saturday, April 9, 2011

Salted Duck Eggs (Itlog Na Maalat)

The word "fermented" usually doesn't get diners' stomachs growling with anticipation. However, eating salted eggs with vinegar is a time and transpacific trip for me to the dinner table back home. We used to eat this with rice for lunch, a super filling and budget-friendly meal for many Filipinos who couldn't afford to eat meat for every meal. The egg yolk is wonderfully creamy, a nice contrast to the chalkiness of the egg white. Neither Dave nor Jonathan is too fond of this dish, but there's still time to get them to convert, tee hee.

Salted Eggs


1 dozen eggs (duck or chicken)
5 c. salt
2 c. water

Boil water with salt. Strain and cool. Place eggs in a glass container. Pour cooled brine solution over eggs to cover completely. Cover the container with cheese cloth. Soak eggs for 2 weeks. If you want the eggs to be more salty and oily, soak longer. After 2 weeks, wash the eggs and boil them as you would a hard-boiled egg. Dye with purple food coloring. Once they've considerably cooled, serve with sliced tomatoes and vinegar. 

The fermenting process is a popular method in Asian cuisine. You know what fish sauce is made of? That's right - fermented fish in clay jars or boxes. The Thai version is called nam pla. Our version is called "patis," which should not be confused for soy sauce. The discerning pinoy tongue can tell the difference right away. If you frequent Asian establishments, most likely, you've eaten some form of fermented food. Itlog na maalat will not disappoint, I promise! 

If you don't feel like waiting a whole two weeks for these eggs, a trip to your local Pinoy or Asian specialty supermarket should carry some kind of fermented duck egg, which may or may not be dyed. 


  1. Thanks for posting this! I'm an American living in the Philippines, and salted eggs are one of my favorite foods here. I'm always looking for a way to explain them to people back home.

  2. abulous! It's a wonderful, salty, creamy treat. I'm so glad you like the post.