Egg Wash for Baking Bread
Have you ever wondered how bread gets that rich golden colour? The answer may surprise you! Well it comes from a very common baking ingredient, the egg yolk! Although many bakers use the whole egg, in my experience using just the egg yolk can create a wonderful shine on your bakes. This was something I learned during Bread Week on The Great Canadian Baking show!
The Science of Eggwash
The magical chemical reaction which occurs during the egg wash is due to the Maillard reaction, which causes that nice brown colour you see not only in bread, but also in pastries and French Fries . This reaction requires sugar, protein and high heat, which is all commonly found when you heat dough at a high temperature. The extra layer of protein from the egg yolk gives you an even deeper brown colour, and further enhances the tasty flavour. Also the fat from the egg yolk also creates a beautiful finish. The science of baking can be beautiful!
If you prefer not to use eggs, you could also use a few other options that I`ve tried for bread finishes:
- Milk or cream - brush prior to baking for a more dull shine
- Butter - Straight out of the oven, brush butter on to your bread, it will give you a nice golden finish
If you have any comments or tips, please comment below, I`d love to hear them!