Eggs are important for baking for three main reasons. Eggs help all the other ingredients in baked goods stick together. Eggs help to make baking moist. And eggs help baking to rise.
I understand how eggs bind baking and make baking moist, but I had to think (and also research) about how eggs help baking to rise. I learned that it's because when you beat eggs, you're adding air into them and the air gets trapped inside your wet batter. Then, when your baking is in the oven, the air warms and expands and your baking rises.
Now that we're all learned why eggs are important for baking, I'm going to share a recipe I made when I was rushing about in the kitchen and talking on the phone. I was feeling so upside down and preoccupied that I completely forgot to add the eggs to my batter!
I thought forgetting the eggs was going to make my cake a huge flop, but somehow my dessert worked incredibly well and I will never feel the need to eggs to it again!
So, is this is one of the rare times when baking isn't a science? Read below my recipe to see my scientific conclusion :)
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 pinch of salt
3/4 cup butter
3 cups rhubarb, chopped
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1 1/4 cups plain yogurt
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and mix together all the ingredients for the topping in a small bowl. Set aside.
2. Butter a 9 inch round cake pan or springform pan. Dot with 1/4 cup of butter (cut into small pieces). Toss rhubarb with 3/4 cup sugar and spread in the pan evenly.
3. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in one bowl. In another bowl, beat remaining 1/2 cup butter and cup of sugar until fluffy. Add in orange zest and juice. Then add in the flour mixture in additions, alternating with the yogurt. Mix until the batter is smooth.
4. Spread the batter evenly over the rhubarb and crumble the topping on next.
5. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean, about one hour. Let cool for about 10 minutes and then run a knife along the edge of the pan and invert onto a wire rack. Let cool completely and enjoy!
I wouldn't just try and forget the eggs in any baking recipe just because it worked this time. I think the reason this cake worked is mostly because I like to use plain yogurt in place of sour cream whenever I can.
The original recipe I looked at used 1 cup of sour cream in place of the 1 1/4 cups of yogurt I chose to use. My extra yogurt helped to make the cake more moist and you can actually sometimes use yogurt as a binder in place of eggs when baking. Also, there is baking powder in the recipe and that helped the cake to rise.
So I guess baking is still a science; I just used alternative methods instead of the eggs!
Have you ever had a baking almost flop turn out awesome?