It’s hard to know where to start with these tasty, magical little gifts from our feathered friends. The humble egg is truly unmatched in both its uniqueness and importance in the world of baking...
After working for an egg company over the last two years, I can honestly say that I know waaaay more about eggs than I ever thought I would. I can also say with 100% certainty that there are few ingredients more important to any baked treat than the egg.
One lesson on eggs won’t even scratch the surface of all they have to offer. But, we have to start somewhere, right? Today, I’d like to share a quick overview of eggs, and discuss some of their most important functions in our sweets.
Why are eggs so unique?
The versatility of eggs stems from their unique multi-part composition. In other words, the fact that they have a white and a yolk. By separating or combining these elements, we can use them in many different ways.
In all of these lessons, I’ll focus primarily on large eggs, since nearly all baking recipes are written for larges. (Quick tip: any recipe that doesn’t list the egg size should be made with large eggs). Eggs come in many sizes, though, so I’ll be sure to talk through uses and conversion for those in a future lesson!
Scaling and Measurement
Weights and Eggs
One large chicken egg is about 50g (a scant ¼ cup) without its shell, with the yolk weighing about 17g and the white equaling about 33g. In all honesty, I usually use 20g per large yolk, and 30g per large white when converting recipes. I find that this works just fine both in professional and home baking settings.
Eggs are one of the most difficult ingredients to alter the weight of in your recipe. Because of that, they’re usually the first ingredient I consider when developing or scaling a recipe. (You can use a partial egg, but it can be annoying to do properly, so I avoid it if possible).
What determines egg sizes?
Egg size is determined by government regulations for weight. Even though I bake entirely by weight, I rarely weigh out my eggs. Instead, I simply count out the right number and trust they’re the proper weight rather than weighing them individually.
I feel comfortable doing so because the weight variation allowance in federal regulations isn’t enough to throw off your recipe. As long as you’re using the size that’s called for (or large eggs if no size is specified), you should be good to go!
The only time I’ll take the extra step to weigh eggs is if I’m making a really big batch of something. (Think 5x or even 10x a normal single batch.) That’s because small variations can really compound with that major increases in batch size.
The Short + The Sweet
While we've barely even started to scratch the surface of what these presents from the farm have to offer us, hopefully you can already see that eggs are by far one of the most important ingredients in baking - top 3 for sure!
But there's soooo much more I can't wait to teach you so I'll see you soon in the next lesson!
Next up on the egg front...Eggs 102: flavor and function
I hope this lesson helps you bake your next recipe better, and I can't wait to hear about what you've learned. Please share and tag me at @mint.and.mallow.kitchen as I love hearing about all your "aha" moments and learning what you'd like to study next - see you in another lesson soon!
Love, light and sweets always,
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