As much as I lovelovelove eating pastries, I shy away from making them. You need a delicate hand to get them just right and if I’m being honest, a delicate hand I am not. (Also, tons of very specific measuring and science.) When I do venture into the pastry kitchen there’s one trick I always get right, the egg wash.
Egg wash is a mix of egg and a liquid, usually water but sometimes milk. It’s brushed onto doughs before they’re baked to give them color and sheen. It’s a secret weapon professional pastry chefs use to make their pies and tarts other baked goods look like they belong on the shelf of a Parisian patisserie – golden brown and shiny!
It can also be used as a glue on baked goods. See that little unbaked (and unfolded) pizza pocket up there? (You can grab that recipe here.) That’s egg wash I’m brushing along the edges of the dough. It will help seal the edges when I fold the dough over and press the edges together. Want to sprinkle a few sesame seeds on your empanadas or a little turbinado sugar on your hand pies? A light brush will help those grains of sugar stay in place.
How to Make Egg Wash
Eggwash is more technique than recipe, as exact measurements aren’t required. You can make a basic wash by stirring a whole egg together with a splash of water. This will give baked goods a golden brown color and a nice shine. Be sure to choose the right egg wash for the job!
Brush pastry lightly. Too much can create soggy baked goods with uneven finishes.
NEVER use wash on already baked foods.
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