Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Dried Egg Whites/Pasteurized Egg Whites for Meringues, Marshmallows, and Other Confectionary


Jim D.
 Share

Recommended Posts

I actually had some dried egg whites from a local grocery some years ago that did not taste totally disgusting (when flavored with other ingredients in a recipe), but the store quit carrying them, and I don't recall the brand name. I am encouraged by the fact that Peter Greweling calls for using either fresh or powdered egg whites in aerated recipes, meaning that he must have located at least one that tasted OK. Today I found powdered egg whites from Modernist Pantry (a business of which, if I recall correctly, various eGullet contributors have spoken positively). The website has a video showing these egg whites being reconstituted and whipped into a meringue, with the claim that one cannot tell them from fresh egg whites. I will order some of this powder and report back. 

 

I am working on a bonbon filling, this one based on Susanna Yoon's take on the French pastry called marjolaine. In a much-viewed video Susanna uses gelatin-based marshmallow, but in her recipe published in So Good magazine, she calls for fresh egg white-based meringue. Not wishing to use fresh eggs in bonbons (even cooked ones), I have made a gelatin-based meringue twice (trying to guess at her recipe); once was successful, but the second time the baked meringue cookies puffed up (as desired) but many of them split open in the oven. In both cases, the meringue mixture is very fragile, and any attempt to bake a second batch from the mixture comes out as an almost completely flat cookie (which is delicious but totally different from the baked nut meringue used in the original marjolaine).  Thus the conclusion that egg whites are the only reliable way of making the dacquoise layer. And by using actual dacquoise, I can probably adapt Susanna's recipe from So Good.  The taste of the various marjolaine layers together is good enough to keep me searching for a reliable, reproducible way of making this filling.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Maybe we intend something different with the word "disgusting". All dried wgg whites taste/smell like old eggs (there's a word in Italian language just for this, that has no translation in English, at least I could not find one), which is not pleasant (aka "disgusting"). You detect it if you reconstitute the whites and don't add much stuff, if you start adding other ingredients then it gets covered. As far as I know there are no dried egg whites on sale which do not have this taste/smell (I've never been happy to open a bag of dried egg whites, don't like that smell). If you say you found "good" dried egg whites and "disgusting" ones, then this should mean that the disgusting ones were ones that went bad, so the seller gave you a defective product.


As far as producers, most stuff that is sold here is not on sale in the USA. Sosa products are, their Ovoneve (brand name for dried egg whites) is reliable.


For your use, you are totally correct to avoid bringing fresh raw eggs in a chocolate kitchen, much better to avoid these risks. But you would get better results starting with pasteurized egg whites, not the dried ones. You run no risks with pasteurized egg whites, they are safe. After baking they are even safer. Pasteurized egg whites whip better than reconstituted whites (water + dried egg whites), plus you avoid the hassle of mixing the dried ones with water and wait some times for them to hydrate.


I haven't understood what you are aiming to achieve. The original marjolaine is made with dacquoise, which has a soft texture, it's more similar to a biscuit joconde than to a meringue. The original marjolaine gets clean cuts, it would not be possible if the dacquoise layers were cooked farther and become crisp (meringue-like). Using a soft dacquoise in a bonbon is not advisable, for the usual aW troubles.
If you make a gelatin based marshmallow then you should pipe it in the bonbon without baking. If you bake it then gelatin is going to melt in the oven, leading to loss of shape and other troubles.
I would suggest to use the original dacquoise recipe, then baking it more than it's done for the original marjolaine, until the dacquoise becomes crisp like a meringue. I suppose you are going to make small rounds of this to add as a layer in molded bonbons, right? If so, then how are you forming the disks? Spread a layer of dacquoise, cook it, cut the circles while soft, then put again in the oven to get crisp? Or are you piping the circles directly by hand on the parchment paper? To speed up this process you can buy a dedicated chablon: it's a piece of plastic the size of a pan, with shaped holes all over it. It should be easy to find a chablon that suits your needs, there are lots of sizes for chablons with round holes.

 

 


Teo

 

Teo

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, teonzo said:

Maybe we intend something different with the word "disgusting". All dried wgg whites taste/smell like old eggs (there's a word in Italian language just for this, that has no translation in English, at least I could not find one), which is not pleasant (aka "disgusting"). You detect it if you reconstitute the whites and don't add much stuff, if you start adding other ingredients then it gets covered. As far as I know there are no dried egg whites on sale which do not have this taste/smell (I've never been happy to open a bag of dried egg whites, don't like that smell). If you say you found "good" dried egg whites and "disgusting" ones, then this should mean that the disgusting ones were ones that went bad, so the seller gave you a defective product.


As far as producers, most stuff that is sold here is not on sale in the USA. Sosa products are, their Ovoneve (brand name for dried egg whites) is reliable.


For your use, you are totally correct to avoid bringing fresh raw eggs in a chocolate kitchen, much better to avoid these risks. But you would get better results starting with pasteurized egg whites, not the dried ones. You run no risks with pasteurized egg whites, they are safe. After baking they are even safer. Pasteurized egg whites whip better than reconstituted whites (water + dried egg whites), plus you avoid the hassle of mixing the dried ones with water and wait some times for them to hydrate.


I haven't understood what you are aiming to achieve. The original marjolaine is made with dacquoise, which has a soft texture, it's more similar to a biscuit joconde than to a meringue. The original marjolaine gets clean cuts, it would not be possible if the dacquoise layers were cooked farther and become crisp (meringue-like). Using a soft dacquoise in a bonbon is not advisable, for the usual aW troubles.
If you make a gelatin based marshmallow then you should pipe it in the bonbon without baking. If you bake it then gelatin is going to melt in the oven, leading to loss of shape and other troubles.
I would suggest to use the original dacquoise recipe, then baking it more than it's done for the original marjolaine, until the dacquoise becomes crisp like a meringue. I suppose you are going to make small rounds of this to add as a layer in molded bonbons, right? If so, then how are you forming the disks? Spread a layer of dacquoise, cook it, cut the circles while soft, then put again in the oven to get crisp? Or are you piping the circles directly by hand on the parchment paper? To speed up this process you can buy a dedicated chablon: it's a piece of plastic the size of a pan, with shaped holes all over it. It should be easy to find a chablon that suits your needs, there are lots of sizes for chablons with round holes.

 

 


Teo

 

 

Your reply is, as usual, very helpful. I like the idea of pasteurized, fresh egg whites; I'll have to see if I can find them locally.  I have access to Sosa products, but (without checking) assume the container is going to be much larger than I can cope with, given that I will not be making this filling all that often and given the short shelf life of dried egg whites.

 

Susanna Yoon (originator of this bonbon filling) made it work with gelatin-based marshmallow, and, as I reported, it worked for me the first time. But I believe egg whites will produce a more reliable recipe.  The recipes I have seen for marjolaine (the cake) call for meringue layers, which start out quite crisp but, because they are adjacent to components such as pastry cream or butter cream or ganache (depending on the recipe), they soften as they sit, and nearly all recipes assume the cake will not be served immediately. I have seen several references to Fernand Point's original recipe that lead people to believe he used meringue (with nuts folded in), but it seems a bit hazy.  I haven't seen any reference to a softer layer that you mentioned, except in cases where people are adapting the recipe.  In any event, it's the nut meringue that I am going to use (and have used in the version that I have made). In Susanna Yoon's video, there is a big point made of how crunchy the meringue cookies are on the outside, but soft inside. That's what I am aiming for. She does, by the way, sprinkle them with confectioner's sugar just before baking them.

 

I was quite pleased to see your recommendation that I get a chablon for shaping the cookies because that's exactly what I did!  I was surprised that I found one with circles the size I needed to fit in the molds I am using, but Chocolat Chocolat in Montreal is an amazing place. The chablon worked quite well to keep the cookies in shape. What Yoon does is to pipe them without a guide of any kind (her piping skills are impressive), and she lets them rise as they will, then turns them upside down into the ganache in the shell, so they soften as they sit--unlike the usual goal of keeping cookies crisp by surrounding them with something like a gianduja.  So what I did is to fill the shells about 1/3 with a hazelnut gianduja ganache made with dark chocolate, then another 1/3 of almond gianduja ganache made with a combination of milk and white chocolate--to keep it more like an almond cream, then inserted the nut meringue cookie with the pointed, risen side down. I must say I am pleased with the flavor combination, and after I get the cookie to be something I can produce reliably (which I think the egg white meringue rather than gelatin marshmallow will accomplish), I will be satisfied.  The Aw, by the way, of the two ganaches was quite within acceptable limits, and although I didn't check the cookies, they were crisp enough that I can't see a problem with them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, Jim D. said:

I like the idea of pasteurized, fresh egg whites; I'll have to see if I can find them locally.

 

All supermarkets here sell pasteurized egg whites. Few of them sell yolks and whole eggs, but whites are sold everywhere. They are in the fridge section near milk and cream. They are packaged in tetrapack, each one contains 500 g egg whites, cost is 1.50€ on average. I suppose you should be able to find them there too, since there is a much bigger choice of packaged stuff in the USA.

 

 

 

15 hours ago, Jim D. said:

I have access to Sosa products, but (without checking) assume the container is going to be much larger than I can cope with,

 

Definetely a problem, especially because Sosa stuff is not cheap.

 

 

About hte marjolaine, the original was made with dacquoise. I can see why people talk about meringue on the various webpages, that's because few people know what a dacquoise really is and they assume it's meringue-like.
A dacquoise is meringue based for sure, since you start with egg whites and sugar to get a soft meringue. Then you add the ground nuts and optionally some flour. Usual ratios are 1 part egg whites, 1.5 part sugar, 1 part nuts. Sugar is less than a usual meringue (should be 2 parts in a usual meringue). Dacquoise is cooked until it retains its shape and remains soft, here lies the main error made by people who don't know what a dacquoise is. They see it's meringue based and baked and suppose it musts be crisp like meringues (the cookies). If you keep baking it then it becomes crisp, that's for sure, but it's not what a dacquoise is supposed to be. The real difficulty in making a dacquoise is being able to judge when it's at the correct stage of baking, it takes some experience.
Meringue baking works similarly. If you take it out of the oven after few time, then it retains its shape and is soft. If you keep baking, then the outer sides become crisp while the interior remains soft. If you keep baking more, then it becomes completely crisp (which is what people aim for meringue cookies).
If you want to have both a crisp part and a soft part, then you can bake the meringue disks until they are crisp outside and soft inside, which is pretty easy to check: take one out of the oven, bite it and see by yourself. Then you can spray with cocoa butter or dark chocolate (would go with this) or what else, so you are sure the texture will remain the one you wished for.
If you put the meringue disk over the ganache without spraying it, then it will absorb part of the moisture from the ganache (the usual water migration). This will change with time and is a bit out of control.

 


Curiosity: one of the traditional Italian bonbons are the "cuneesi al rum":
https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuneese_al_rum
http://www.pasticceriacuneo.it/prodotti/cuneesi-al-rhum/
They are made with a chocolate pastry cream flavoured with rum (lots of rum, which acts as preservative) sandwiched between two discs of meringue (baked at higher temperature than usual, to get maillard reactions and nut like flavor), then coated in dark chocolate. They are really successful with people who love booze.

 

 


Teo

 

 

Teo

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@teonzo:  Upon further reflection (and after eating one of the "marjolaine" bonbons that had sat for a while), I think I will abandon the idea of deliberately allowing the cookie insert to soften.  Instead, I will add the hazelnut gianduja ganache to the shell first, then instead of almond gianduja ganache, make a soft almond gianduja (one that will have a texture not wholly unlike ganache), and insert the cookie into that. In that way I can bake the nut meringue cookies as you describe (crisp outside, softer inside), and, when surrounded by gianduja, they should maintain that texture. Susanna Yoon is firm about a 10-day shelf life for her bonbons, but I don't have the luxury of that with my wholesale customers (and retail ones who eat their box of chocolates slowly). Do you see any issues with my revised plan?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Seems like the optimal solution in all aspects. You are raising the amount of almonds, not the amount of hazelnuts, which is perfect because hazelnuts are stronger than almonds. No troubles about shelf life, many pastry shops here sell "spumiglie", they are big meringues (4-5 inches) that are half baked, meaning crisp outside and soft inside. They last ages, I made an "experiment" (read "I forgot them in a tin box"), after 5 years they were still fine.

 

 

 

Teo

 

Teo

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, teonzo said:

No troubles about shelf life, many pastry shops here sell "spumiglie", they are big meringues (4-5 inches) that are half baked, meaning crisp outside and soft inside. They last ages, I made an "experiment" (read "I forgot them in a tin box"), after 5 years they were still fine.

Teo

 

 

"5 years" may be exceeding the shelf life I require, even for my most frugal customers, who stretch their Christmas boxes until Easter.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 7 months later...

A followup to the attempt to create a "marjolaine" bonbon (second try, actually).  This time I made nut meringues using pasteurized egg whites and a recipe I found for the nutty layers of the marjolaine cake.  Piping the batter into the circles of a chablon did not work as the meringue batter stuck to the silicone form, so I moved to piping them directly onto a Silpat.  This worked well, although some of them were a little misshapen, but I discovered, when assembling the bonbon, that the meringue cookies were quite forgiving when being trimmed.  I baked these at 300F.

 

I made dark chocolate shells, then piped in hazelnut praline ganache to fill the cavity about 1/3.  Then I made almond praline gianduja and added that to the cavity using a confectionery funnel.  I added one of the "marjolaine cookies" and pushed it into the gianduja.  If the cavity was not quite full enough, I added more almond gianduja.  The taste is what I was looking for (hazelnut, almond, crunchy layer), and buried in the gianduja, the cookie should stay relatively crisp, though the egg whites give it a pleasant softness as well.

 

I should add that the meringue batter is easy to pipe and does not spread for the first Silpat. but it will not sit around for very long before getting more fluid.  Next time I think I will beat the egg whites with sugar, then divide the batter into halves.  I will add half the pulverized hazelnuts and almonds to one half of egg whites, pipe that, then "refresh" the other half of egg whites with a beater and add the remaining nut mixture for the second Silpat.

 

I would be glad to give the recipe to anyone interested.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

going back to your original post, i was wondering what egg white products you tried, and what about them tasted bad? did you make a meringue or try to rehydrate and scramble them, out of curiosity?

 

i was just wondering because i add a good quality egg white powder to my smoothies and can't complain; i use it in baked goods sometimes but i haven't tried a meringue yet.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 hours ago, jimb0 said:

going back to your original post, i was wondering what egg white products you tried, and what about them tasted bad? did you make a meringue or try to rehydrate and scramble them, out of curiosity?

 

i was just wondering because i add a good quality egg white powder to my smoothies and can't complain; i use it in baked goods sometimes but i haven't tried a meringue yet.

 

Previously I mentioned that the brand I bought at a local grocery is no longer carried, and I have forgotten the name.  The one I purchased through Amazon was Judee's Dried Egg White, and even though it gets an Amazon rating of 4.5 out of 5, I threw it out as inedible.  I hope I haven't just insulted the brand that you use in your smoothies. 😄

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

haha, no, but i wouldn't mind if you did. it's probably a niche case.

 

i have tried the now foods and canadian protein brands (not sure who the latter sources for their egg whites, it may actually also be now) and i think they're fine, but again, i haven't used them in an instance where you can really exclusively taste only egg whites. i'm tempted, now, though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 6 months later...

Know I'm a little late to this thread but I recently rediscovered the video where Susanna makes these bonbons and I also got stuck on the idea of a meringue inside of them. So naturally, I came here to see if anyone had discussed the idea :)

 

More specifically, I'd like to try my hand at a meringue pie bonbon, so I'd welcome any thoughts anyone had on how to create a plain meringue that might hold up for a few days inside of a bonbon. Per one of the earlier comments, Susanna did mention that she uses two types of sugar, gelatin, and no eggs. I am open to other suggestions though, my aim is more just to get something that can survive for a reasonable period of time. 

 

Oh, and in case you haven't seen it, here's a pic of one of her meringue pie bonbons.

 

Bonbon.png.8cb5a8595a36b0e6777623bd6f9b424c.png

 

Edited by cslas
added image (log)
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

In regard to the marjorlaine bonbon, Susanna changed her recipe at some point.  That bonbon is featured in an issue of So Good magazine and also in the video you mentioned.  In one case she makes "meringue" with egg whites, in the other, with gelatin.  But she is baking the meringue into a cookie.  I gather you are referring to a different bonbon of hers, the one with kalamansi being the best known.  When I am doing a lemon pie bonbon (and variations of it), I simply use marshmallow made with gelatin to simulate meringue.  I don't see how a true meringue (egg whites beaten with sugar) could survive inside a bonbon.  Wouldn't it completely collapse rather quickly?  I know you mentioned lasting "a few days," so perhaps you could get away with that  since the Aw doesn't matter so much, but I would think the meringue would have to be stabilized in some way or it would be flattened by the layer added on top of it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I make marshmallows, I like the Smitten Kitchen recipe that is a whipped sugar/gelatin mix, but had two beaten egg whites added at the end. So, since I was mailing them and was iffy on the raw egg whites thing, I used egg white powder. The brand I had was from King Arthur, and the marshmallows didn't taste any different.  I don't know how they would taste by themselves though. I was planning on using it when I try the toasted marshmallow experiment. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, RWood said:

When I make marshmallows, I like the Smitten Kitchen recipe that is a whipped sugar/gelatin mix, but had two beaten egg whites added at the end. So, since I was mailing them and was iffy on the raw egg whites thing, I used egg white powder. The brand I had was from King Arthur, and the marshmallows didn't taste any different.  I don't know how they would taste by themselves though. I was planning on using it when I try the toasted marshmallow experiment. 

 

Since they didn't taste different with egg whites, why did you decide to add them?  For the marjolaine cookies, I use pasteurized egg whites, but some time in a 350F oven should allay any fears one might have.  Marshmallow, of course, is a different thing.  As discussed previously in this thread, I have not found dried egg whites that taste OK, but I have not tried the King Arthur brand (or whatever product for "meringue powder" they are selling under their name).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Jim D. said:

 

Since they didn't taste different with egg whites, why did you decide to add them?  For the marjolaine cookies, I use pasteurized egg whites, but some time in a 350F oven should allay any fears one might have.  Marshmallow, of course, is a different thing.  As discussed previously in this thread, I have not found dried egg whites that taste OK, but I have not tried the King Arthur brand (or whatever product for "meringue powder" they are selling under their name).

The recipe calls for two egg whites whipped to soft peaks then folded in, so that's basically raw egg whites in the marshmallows. I've made them like that several times, and they were fine. But, I thought I would try the dried whites just too see if there was a difference. I felt like it would be less of a worry since they were being shipped.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry for the late reply. It's been a couple of hectic weeks leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. Thank you for this feedback. I think I'll probably try a variation of a marshmallow in lieu of the meringue. I'm still a very novice chocolatier, which makes reverse engineering some of these recipes trickier, but it doesn't stop be from trying :) Jim, when you've made you lemon pie bon bon, what are you using as the filling? A ganache, a curd, something else?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, cslas said:

Sorry for the late reply. It's been a couple of hectic weeks leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. Thank you for this feedback. I think I'll probably try a variation of a marshmallow in lieu of the meringue. I'm still a very novice chocolatier, which makes reverse engineering some of these recipes trickier, but it doesn't stop be from trying :) Jim, when you've made you lemon pie bon bon, what are you using as the filling? A ganache, a curd, something else?

 

A lemon curd tends to have too high a water content, and I try not to use eggs, even cooked, in bonbons.  So I use Ewald Notter's lemon ganache--it has a strong lemon flavor.  His lime ganache also works well in a bonbon, whether in the "pie" or the "cheesecake" bonbon.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 4/26/2021 at 9:53 PM, jimb0 said:

i was just wondering because i add a good quality egg white powder to my smoothies and can't complain; i use it in baked goods sometimes but i haven't tried a meringue yet.

 

Hi @jimbo, I'm not a bonbon maker but I do make smoothies. Could you mention the name of the powder?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...