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To egg wash or not to egg wash

Whenever I am making bread or pastry and it calls for an egg wash I hate wasting an egg when the wash uses only 2% of the whole egg. Is it ok to skip this? Do any of you have suggestions for other things I could use in place of the wash?

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  1. I'm with you on this one. I usually cook the leftover wash for my dog. At least someone gets to eat it.
    I wonder tho if a wash with h2o and sugar would work just as well?

    1. Melted butter is nice in place of the egg wash. Won't be quite as shiny but it tastes good.

      1. 2% of the whole egg? Just put more on, and what's left over becomes scrambled eggs.

        1. The croissants yesterday were brushed with an egg wash. I don't think that you can achieve that brown glaze any other way. Whenever I do a pastry-topped casserole dish, I use an egg wash -- the result is just so pretty that I think it justifies sacrificing an egg.

          1. I am of the egg wash=good school. It's not just pretty, it also adds a nice "skin" to pastry that gives it a subtle toothsomeness that is just wonderful. And it can also act as a great "glue" for toppings like sugar or poppyseeds.

            1. you can sub things for the wash, but to different results. Egg washes have a distinct effect on a pastry. Cream has a different, milk another, butter yet another.

              If it really bothers that much, freeze leftover egg whites. Then you can use what you need. But, frankly, that just seems too much work for something that costs 20 cents.

              - Adam

              1 Reply
              1. re: adamclyde

                I agree about freezing. I do this often. Also an egg white can be added to scrambled eggs or omlettes giving extra volume while not losing the egg yolk flavor.

              2. Last time I noticed, JUMBO grade A eggs were a $1.19 a dozen at Publix Supermarket. That's about 10c each. Hmmm!

                1 Reply
                1. re: cucuzza

                  It's not the price. It is wasting food. My mother grew up during the depression and some of that carefullness not to waste anything rubbed off on me.

                2. I used to not use an egg wash b/c I didn't think it would really make a difference and like you didn't want to waste an egg. But if you care at all about presentation, just do it! The golden brown crust/color is amazing. If you're still worried about wasting...make something you can use it in for dinner...like meatloaf or fried rice.

                  1. Skip it. I personally hate the way egg wash tastes on baked goods. And I hate the texture of the crust it forms too! If you have some cream handy, use it instead.