The Benefit Of Only Using The Whites For Your Egg Wash

The power of an egg wash to create the picture-perfect golden and glossy finish on bread, pastry, or other baked goods is undeniable. This magical technique basically involves applying either plain whole egg, egg yolk, egg white, or a combination of either of these egg parts with a liquid such as water, milk, or cream over your baked goods right before popping them in the oven. But if you're undecided about which of these options to use for your baked goods, consider using egg whites only since it has several benefits.

Egg whites produce a clear sheen, unlike any other wash, thanks to the omission of the yolk. On the other hand, this type of wash serves as an edible adhesive that helps stick sprinkled sugar or spices on the dough before the baking process begins. The gummy nature of egg whites is also why bakers use them to seal edges when making filled pastries. And lastly, if you're making pies, you may want to smear some of those whites on the pie crust dough to serve as a barrier that prevents a soggy bottom crust when you eventually add the filling.

How to make the perfect wash using only egg whites

Making a wash using only egg whites is pretty straightforward. However, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind for a foolproof process. Start by preparing your egg white — you can either use them alone or mix them with water, milk, or cream by whisking thoroughly using a fork. It's also important to note that the wash containing water will barely produce any browning on the finished baked goods, while the cream mixture will produce some coloration. However, if you desire more browning, add sugar to the egg white for caramelization. 

Next, select the ideal pastry bush to use. A silicone brush is preferred because of easy clean-up afterward, but if you're baking more delicate dishes, like pastries with laminated dough, go for the natural bristle brush. Now begin applying the egg white mixture to the baked goods gently, aiming for a thin and even coating. Avoid pooling on the surface of the dough or around the base, as this may alter the taste of the finished dish or result in an uneven appearance. 

And, in case the egg white's consistency makes it difficult to brush, you can add a pinch of salt to loosen it up. Finally, pop your baked goods into the oven and prepare for a stunning glazed look.