Without eggs, homemade cookies are no more than stone breads with sugar. This natural ingredient contributes to:
- Building structure
- Lending desirable texture and taste
- extending shelf life
Their overall composition is 76% moisture, 12% proteins, 10% fats, and 2% sugar.
We can whip egg whites up to 8 times their volume, creating a desirable medium where air cells can be trapped to help leavening cookie dough.
Due to their high fat content, yolks can increase richness, tenderness, flavor, and color in homemade cookies. They also extend shelf life by delaying the staling process.
Each yolk generally contains 50% moisture and 50% fats and proteins combined. Proteins in yolk act as an edible glue binding to both water and oil. This effect is very important in holding cookie dough together. Fats interfere with gluten development, making homemade cookies soft and tender.
Shell eggs come in three acceptable grades: AA, A, and B. These grades do not reflect product safety or nutritional value. The main differences between grades A and AA are the firmness of the white and the size of the air pocket. As time passes, the size of air pockets increases and the white loses its firmness.
Grade AA – covers a small area and stands high; white is thick and firm; yolk is high and round.
Grade A – covers moderate area; white is reasonably firm and stands fairly high; yolk is high.
Grade B is perfectly acceptable for general baking. However, we may not be able to whip grade B whites to a desirable volume. Grade B is rarely available to retailed consumers. These may have one or more of the following defects:
- Stained shells
- Large air cells
- Small blood spot in whites
- Watery whites
- Enlarge and flattened yolk
Hens with white feathers and white earlobes lay white eggs. Those with red feathers and red earlobes lay brown ones. Similar to grades, shell color has no real effect on flavor and nutrition.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration classifies this nutritious ingredient as a potentially hazardous food. I like to refrigerate it in its original carton, with the more pointed end down. Do not use if it has a strong off odor. Cracks of any size on the shell is unacceptable.
Well, it’s time to select an easy cookie recipe, take out a few of this nutritious ingredient, wash your hands, and start baking. I will continue adding more recipes as we go along…