By: Duane Inglin
For a good reason we constantly field questions about curing eggs. Some popular and good frequently asked questions are, “How long will they last in the freezer?” or “How long will they last in the refrigerator?” and “Will they mold?”
Specific answers to these questions are nearly impossible. Many variables contribute to the answer. For example, how the angler prepped, cured and stored the eggs. Eggs can be over cured, freezer burned and start to look bad over time if not stored properly. However, if you think your eggs are bad don’t throw them out. I have a solution, which most of the time makes the eggs fishable again.
Let me tell you a quick story. I had some vacuum-sealed chum eggs that I cured for steelhead fishing stored in the freezer for three years. Last year I thawed them out and fished them. They fished great. Meanwhile, I had several left over at the end of the season and left them in the refrigerator stored in a container stacked on paper towels for a year. I took them this season and they still looked good. Unfortunately, they dried out and didn’t fish well.
Most anglers would throw them out. Me? Not a chance. I walked over to my Bait Lab and grabbed a bottle of Pautzke Nectar. It’s my (and many other’s) magic solution to bring cured eggs back to life. Simply by using a bottle (or two) of Nectar you will recharge your dried-out eggs. Then they will fish fantastic (again). Here are the simple steps needed to recharge your steelhead baits (this works on all cured eggs).
Put all your eggs into a container large enough that you can then pour in a bottle or two of Nectar.
Ensure that you pour in enough Nectar to cover the eggs. It’s important to submerge them so they absorb the Nectar.
Leave them in the fridge for two or three days. This allows enough time for the eggs to absorb the Nectar. Remember, these eggs are dried out and tough. The soak revitalizes and makes them fishable again.
You can see in the previous photo (above) how much Nectar these eggs absorbed. They are now plumped up and moist, yet still have a gummy consistency and will hold up well.
After three days in the refrigerator place them in a colander to drain off excess juice. I don’t want them sloppy wet. Remember, these are steelhead and not salmon baits. There’s no need for them to broadcast a wet and milky scent trail.
Notice the difference in the eggs texture and volume. The Nectar (pure egg juice) does a great job recharging bait. It’s the only product in the world like it. Think about it: you are pouring real egg juice back into cured eggs. There’s a reason why many guides and pros order Nectar from the factory in five-gallon buckets.
Here is an example of before and after photos. (Keep in mind Pautzke Nectar comes in red). These eggs were originally cured with Orange BorX O Fire. After the Nectar soak the eggs take on that color, but it’s better than having to toss them.
To ensure these eggs store well in the refrigerator I stack rows of baits onto folded paper towels in a plastic tub. The paper towels also absorb any extra Nectar. This toughens them up and makes them durable.
Weather your eggs are too dried out to fish form storage or your curing process, remember before you throw them away, give the Nectar soak a try. I am sure, you’ll be pleased with the results.
Editor’s Note: Former radio host, guest speaker and seminar presenter Duane Inglin is a fixture in Northwest salmon/steelhead fishing. He spends more time in The Bait Lab than most. To view a behind the scenes video of Pautzke Nectar with Inglin please click the following link: https://youtu.be/cHd2Zzezl3k.