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9 FAQs About Whipping Egg Whites

In Baking Hows, Whys, and WTFs, Shilpa Uskokovic will reply to your burning baking questions and share her guidelines for perfect sweets. This month: everything youve ever wished to find out about whipping egg whites.

Egg whites are weird. They start as a liquid, that may become a foam, that may become a solid. Few things in nature really behave in this manner (hens just on the market doing probably the most). But its this same supernatural capability to morph in one form to some other which makes egg whites (and eggs generally) so valuable in a pastry kitchen. Meringues, buttercreams, souffls, chiffon cakesnone of the would exist once we know them without egg whites and their magical, mystical foaming power. Yet whipping egg whites could be finicky work. Today, were tackling FAQs, so that you can whip confidently.

But first, what’s an egg white?

Egg whites will be the translucent liquid part of an egg, creating the majority of its weight. Theyre mostly water (90%) and protein (the stuff were really thinking about today) with tiny levels of minerals and vitamins.

Just how do eggs foam?

The proteins in egg whites have the effect of all of the bubbles. Without them, egg whites would remain liquid regardless of how hard you whip them. Imagine the proteins only a small amount blobs with arms crossed. When whisked or heated, the proteins unfurl their arms, reaching toward one another, connecting around a little bubble of air and water. The longer you whip, the stronger those connections become.

So, the longer the higher?

Well, nearly. There is any such thing as too strong. If your whipped egg whites become curdled and dry, they will have gone too much. After excessive whipping, the proteins will get so near one another, they essentially suffocate and expel the water contained of their circle, causing your foam to split up.

Will there be any way to avoid egg whites from overwhipping?

Lucky us, yes. For stable egg whites that may never escape hand, just put in a little acid. Acid prevents certain the different parts of the egg proteins from bonding together too tightly, that may result in a foam that separates right into a mass of sad bubbles and a runny liquid. The best acidic ingredient because of this is cream of tartar. Use tsp. cream of tartar per egg white. Add it to the whites (and sugar, if using) at the start. Now, regardless of just how long you whip those whites, theyll never break. This works if youre creating a meringue with sugar or simply whipping whites independently to fold into another thing. Lemon juice or vinegar my work, but theyre weaker and less consistent in acidity than cream of tartar so theyre much less reliable.

Does the temperature of the eggs matter?

Contrary to public opinion, egg whites dont have to be at room temperature to attain their full whipping potential. The mixer will beat it right into a mad froth regardless, so straight from the fridge is okay. Whats more: Cold eggs are firmer in the shell, lowering the probability of the yolk breaking and mixing with the white.

Wait, how come the yolk mixing with the white bad?

Egg whites could be super picky about who they hang with. They dont prosper with fat of any sort and sometimes simply won’t whip in its presence. Yolks are about 30% fat and, should they find their way right into a plate of whites, it could swiftly become messy. Small traces of yolk are fine though, so dont overthink this.

Do I want a fancy copper bowl to whip my whites in?

Unlike other myths, that one has some scientific value. Copper bowls leach tiny levels of the metal because the eggs are increasingly being whisked. This reacts with the protein bonds and stabilizes them. Butwelcome to the 21st century and its own high-powered machinesyou dont have to depend on this reaction anymore. While whisking yourself was previously the only real option, a power mixer includes a many more strength and endurance (sorry, biceps!).

So what can I really do with those egg yolks?

Egg yolks could keep within an airtight container in the fridge for three days. Utilize them in ice creams, mayonnaise, puddings, and carbonara. Or fortify a breakfast scramble having an extra yolk or two.

Which whipped egg white recipe must i make first?

Thats easy: this Mango Messa laid-back version of a pavlova, with tiles of lime-scented meringue and big drifts of whipped sour cream.

Bowl with mango and meringue on white tablecloth.

Juicy fruit, a pillowy cloud of cream, and shards of crisp meringue get together for the tastiest Eton mess you’ll ever make.

View Recipe

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