What does an egg wash do and why do you need to use it?
An egg wash is simply an egg that is mixed with a little liquid to be brushed onto various pastries. You can use the egg wash to seal edges (like when making won-tons), add shine, or brown up your baked goods.
Do you ever see those beautiful pies with decorative pieces on them? Like cutouts of leaves or hearts? Those are “glued on” with an egg wash!
How do you make an egg wash?
You simply mix together an egg and 1 tablespoon of liquid. I just use water. However, some people use milk or cream as well.
Just beat it together with a fork.
To use it, simply brush it on to the pastry with a pastry brush. I use a silicone brush pastry brush as I find they hold up with time better and clean up easier!
Is egg wash just yolk? Do you use the whole egg?
I typically use the whole egg. However, just using the whites is an option too.
Typically, if you use the whole egg, it gives it a more golden appearance, while the whites just give a shine. You may want to just use the egg whites and water if sealing edges so the edges don’t brown up differently.
What happens if I don’t use this for my baked goods?
If you don’t use an egg wash, your pastry can look dull and dry. It basically doesn’t look appetizing.
What if I don’t have a pastry brush?
If you don’t have a pastry or basting brush, don’t stress. (However, I’d advise you to invest in one because they are cheap.) You can do other alternatives though in a pinch:
- clean, unused paintbrush
- rub it on gently with a paper towel
- drizzle it on with a spoon, then use clean fingers to rub it into the pastry
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I hope this shows you that an egg wash is super easy to use and will make a beautiful pastry. It’s not really something that you can mess up, and it will make you look like a baking professional!
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