Certain bird nest brands come with a sealed vacuum bag inside the packaging. Take the vacuum bag out from the box and open it. Once you've opened the vacuum bag, DO NOT put the bird nests back inside the bag, as this will make the nests turn bad.
Once you’ve opened up the vacuum bag, spread it out at room temperature. Avoid direct sunlight. And let it dry until the nests are dried. (usually around 1~2 days). The tray inside the vacuum bag (available in certain brands) makes a great temporary place to spread out the bird nests.
After the bird nests are completely dried, feel free to store it however you choose. But DO NOT put it back inside the packaging box.
The real, pure bird nest color is not real white, but grayish or yellowish. If there is a white color bird nest in the market, find the one that is thin and pretty clean because a harvester picks the bird nest while it is still young. Thus, be careful to select the real white color one. Some well-knows brands, because they want to sell their products in a big quantity, they pay less attention to the quality.
When bird nest is immersed in the water for about 1-1.5 hour, it should not break up into small pieces, but it will be shredded in a long shape. And the water will remains clear.
When bird nest is cooked for about 40-45 minutes, it expands and becomes soft. However, the smell still remains (bird nest genuine smells).