One blog reader from last week's blog sent me some additional information on cooking and baking with egg substitutes. Please read below.
For anyone interested:
Egg Substitutes for Baked GoodsIn a typical recipe for baked goods, eggs generally play one of two roles:binder (to hold the recipe together) or leavening agent (to help it rise). Sometimes eggs play both roles at once. Determining which purpose the eggs primarily hold in the recipe you are considering will help you determine what options for replacement you might have.
As a rule of thumb, if a recipe for baked goods calls for three or more eggs per batch (with a typical "batch" consisting of 36 cookies, one pan of brownies, one loaf of bread, or one cake), egg substitutes generally do not work. The consistency of the finished product comes out poorly. Pound cakes, sponge cakes, angel food cakes, and other popular desserts with relatively high egg content do not turn out well in egg-free cooking. In these situations, it is usually best to make something else.
There are commercial egg replacement products on the market. Be sure that you are considering an egg replacement, not an egg substitute. Egg substitutes are generally marketed in the dairy portion of the grocery store, and are designed for cholesterol-conscious people, rather than for egg-allergic people. They contain egg, and are unsafe for those with egg allergies. Commercial egg replacement products (such as Ener-G brand Egg Replacer®, a popular powdered product that is available in natural foods stores across the U.S.) generally will work for either binding or leavening purposes. As with any other product, be sure to read the ingredient statement to ensure that the product is indeed safe for your child.
Eggs as a BinderFor recipes which use eggs primarily as a binder (such as drop cookies), possible substitutions for one egg include:
- 1/2 of a medium banana, mashed
- 1/4 cup of applesauce (or other pureed fruit)
- 3-1/2 tablespoons gelatin blend (mix 1 cup boiling water and 2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin, and then use 3-1/2 tablespoons of that mixture per egg)
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seed mixed with 3 tablespoons warm water; let stand 1 minute before using
- Commercial egg replacement products (see above)
Keep in mind that the addition of pureed fruit may impact both the taste and the density of the finished product.
Xanthan GumXanthan gum can be added to egg-free cakes and cookies, as well as milk-free ice cream, to bind and add texture. Use about one teaspoon per recipe. Xanthan gum is a white powder derived from the exoskeleton of a bacterium. It is cultivated on corn sugar.
Eggs as a Leavening AgentFor recipes which use eggs primarily as a leavening agent you can try a commercial egg replacement product (see above) or the following mixture:
- 1-1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil mixed with 1-1/2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon baking powder per egg.
Note: this mixture calls for baking powder, not baking soda. The two products are not interchangeable.
Egg White GlazeOccasionally recipes will use egg whites as a glaze, with the beaten egg whites brushed onto the top of the item before it is cooked. One good option here is to use melted margarine instead of the beaten egg whites.
I was on KQ2 TV yesterday morning doing a cooking segment with Bob and William. The recipe was from the cookbook for "French Dip Panini" and they loved it. Here is the link KQ2.
This week is about being a "Vegetarian" and what that means. It should be interesting because some of us do it occasionally and don't even think about it. I will also talk about "Tofu" and the different kinds and how to use them. Of course, Friday there will be a "Vegetarian Recipe" for an easy entree. Have a great week.