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Old 08-19-2007, 02:05 PM   #1
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Attention All Bakers

Question. When a cake recipe calls for, say 5 egg yolks. Almost always it says add them one at a time to the creamed sugar/shortening/butter etc. and mix well after each one. Why??? What would be the end result in the cake if you add all 5 yolks at once as opposed to one at a time???

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Old 08-19-2007, 02:07 PM   #2
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I think it is just to make sure it all gets incorporated correctly. Sometimes if you dump it in as one lump sum, you might not get it all nice and smooth.
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Old 08-19-2007, 02:20 PM   #3
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It's similar to adding oil slowly when making mayonnaise. You have to give the batter time to distribute and incorporate the fat and emulsifiers in the yolks.
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Old 08-19-2007, 02:23 PM   #4
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Alton Brown has this to say on it:

Jack-guest: I watched your show with Chocolate Lava Muffins, and wondered why you add the eggs one at a time. What could happen if you add all 4 eggs at once?

AltonBrown: The same reason that you drizzle oil into a salad dressing - because the beginning mixture contains fat and water, and eggs contain fat and water. We're basically making a large emulsion. Emulsions have a much better chance of forming if the elements are brought together slowly. If you don't add them slowly, you'll end up with clunks of eggs over here, clunks of chocolate over there - you won't have a homogeneous mixture. This is really, really, REALLY important, not only in this recipe, but in any batter or dough in which eggs are integrated after wet and dry ingredients are brought together.

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Old 08-19-2007, 02:23 PM   #5
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Yep, yep, yeppers. What Alix and Andy said.
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Old 08-19-2007, 02:29 PM   #6
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I echo all of the above. I'm not much of a baker, but learned this lesson the hard way. I, too, didn't see the point, and wound up with a dry cake with scrambled egg bits in it. Funny thing is, the batter looked OK to my untrained eye.
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Old 08-19-2007, 02:42 PM   #7
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You are building structure by adding them one at a time. Add the first one, and you have changed what you had. Each time you add another yolk, you are changing and building on what you just had.
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Old 08-20-2007, 12:34 PM   #8
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I knew the answer had to some type of "chemical" reaction. Thanks!!!!
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