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0Unscrambling the role of eggs in baking/media/257419/thumbnail-eggs.jpg<p><strong><img width="680" height="410" src="/media/257417/eggs-680x410.jpg" alt="Eggs 680x 410"/></strong></p> <p>Eggs are a staple ingredient in baking. But do you know what they actually do? Here’s all you need to know:</p> <p><strong>Whites vs yolks</strong><br /> Egg whites are often used to make baked goods rise. They’re also used for marshmallows, royal icing and are the key ingredient in meringue. For some lighter bakes, like angel food cake, only egg whites are used.</p> <p>Egg yolks, on the other hand, are used to add flavour and colour. They work as a thickener in custard-based bakes. Certain denser bakes, like frangipane tarts, will only call for egg yolks.</p> <p>Although egg whites and yolks are used for different purposes, they most commonly work together. Whole eggs help to create structure, and add moisture and richness to baked goods. When lightly beaten and combined with water or milk to form an egg wash, they bring a lovely shine to the surface of pie crust, pretzels, breads or biscuits.</p> <p>Whole eggs are used to thicken the mixture when making custard or ice cream. They also have binding properties, for example in burger patties or meatballs. Whole eggs are usually added at the creaming stage – adding one egg at a time after the sugar and fat (usually butter) have been beaten together until light and fluffy.</p> <p><strong>Perfect conditions</strong><br /> Room temperature eggs bind and emulsify better than colder eggs, so take them out of the fridge 30 minutes to an hour before baking or put them in a warm bowl of water. The same applies with egg whites – they’re much easier to whip up at room temperature. If you need to separate eggs, it’s best to do so while they’re cold as the yolks are less likely to break.</p> <p><strong>Crack on</strong><br /> Rapping an egg on a flat surface or the inside of a mixing bowl is the best way to get a clean break and avoid small pieces of shell in the mixture. If you do get a piece of shell in the bowl, use a bigger piece of shell to scoop it out.</p> <p>Crack eggs into a separate bowl before adding them to your mixture to avoid having to toss out an entire bowl of ingredients if you accidently break a yolk you needed whole.</p> <p><strong>A matter of size</strong> <br />Most recipes call for the use of large eggs – it’s best to stick to this guideline. Eggs come in various sizes and if you use jumbo or extra large eggs, instead of large, there could be too much liquid in your bake.</p>
Unscrambling the role of eggs in baking