Even if you do not have chickens, at times you may have more eggs that you can really use because more than one person brought home a dozen after there were not enough for breakfast. One simple way of using these extra eggs that does not require refrigeration is pickling them in white vinegar, a little salt and a couple of peppers.
I have posted two videos on YouTube that will take you through the process. The first is “Pickling Excess Eggs Blog Version” which is a 4-minute video that outlines the process at: http://youtu.be/p6ObBHu7Pco. A second, longer video, goes into more detail at: http://youtu.be/iHxxNSIeupA.
This process goes back to ancient China where the tradition of 1,000-year-old eggs emerged. What might have occurred is that robbers raiding royal tombs in China found and ate a porcelain jar of eggs that had been left to feed the deceased a millennium before. This is how the rumor of 1,000 year-old duck eggs might have been started and how such a thing occurs on restaurant menus today.
Any egg may be pickled. In the early history of the U.S. eggs from all manner of fowl and reptiles (turtles & alligators) were pickled in jars and crocks. Even today you can still purchased pickled quail’s eggs from pen-raised quail in gourmet stores. Dr. Sues’ “green eggs and ham” may have its ultimate origin with pickled eggs which were sometimes colored with dye (and still are today). In earlier times these dyes were mineral-based such as copper sulphate and arsenic salts, and were toxic to deadly. Nowadays we use organic-based food dyes which are not quite so blatantly harmful, but may be less than helpful to human health.
If you are going to have a few pickled eggs to keep in the fridge for a few weeks, boil them, put them in a glass jar with some salt and white vinegar and a few peppers (or crushed red pepper) and eat them as you feel the need. Should you wish to keep them long-term, then you will need to make sure that everything so much as possible is sterilized by boiling in hot water, just as you would “can” anything else in glass jars.
An additional caution is that if you are going to use ordinary glass jars that might have contained pickles or mayonnaise, be warned that these are non-tempered glass that will break if exposed to quick heating or cooling. Put hot material in hot jars and cold material in cold jars. Wait until your jars cool before putting them in the fridge. I cannot say that pickled eggs will keep for 1,000 years, but they will certainly keep very well for months if properly canned and stored.