Ok, this probably falls into the “hideously obvious” department, but I just had to share in case there was anyone else not weighing their eggs and components thereof. DO IT!
As a long time baker a la Rose, I’ve always weighed everything—except for the eggs. But I found myself baking from the Cake Bible for Easter with a mix of egg sizes. (Stupid Costco with their extra-large eggs…) So, I measured the egg yolks and needed and needed nearly two more yolks than called for to make weight. Suffice to say, my mind was blown. Also, the extra-large ones had smaller yolks than the large ones. Bizarre.
In any event, the extra care paid off in spades. The batter was considerably, visibly smoother and more even. And the cake was more amazing. Of course, it tasted wonderful, but with a more beautifully even crumb, and lofty as all get out—layer height being one standard by which the English judge the success of the Victoria sponge. My guests from across the pond were suitably impressed. Booyah. So, yes, weigh those eggs!
PFL, welcome to our world! Glad your Easter baking was a success. In addition to your fiindings about yolks, I also find that different brands tend towards different sized yolks. I normally buy a brand that seems to have somewhat larger yolks than others, but the differences from egg to egg are still there.
Interesting… have you found that the XL eggs have correspondingly larger yolks? The XL eggs I bought by accident definitely had SMALLER yolks than the large ones I had on hand. The large eggs were fancy organic Whole Foods eggs, though, so they might have just have been better all around (more yolk=better egg?). As far as using XL eggs goes, I’ve only ever seen Ina Garten call for them? Industry standard seems to be large, and there’s a significant mass difference between the two, which is why I refuse to deal with Ina and her giant-egged recipes. Harumph.
Luke, I’ve only bought the XL once and the yolks are bigger than the ones from the large eggs that I still have. I do believe that maybe you will find some XL yolks that are smaller, just as the large egg yolks vary in size. But I figured since they are the same price, why not buy the XL ones. For Rose’s recipes I weigh the eggs anyway so it’s okay to buy XL eggs. Often times if a recipe calls for 4 egg yolks, I ended up having to use 5 because the yolks are so small. So now that I have the XL eggs, maybe 4 yolks will be enough.
Oh and I also bought Whole Foods organic eggs!
Glad it worked for you Jenn—this is what I always buy now when making ice cream, cr?me anglaise, curd, etc.—anything yolk heavy.
PFLuke, I’ve always found them to be larger, but I’m not really surprised if you came across some that were smaller. I was actually just talking about this in the grocery store last night with someone. I opened a box of large eggs—there were 2 giants and few tiny ones, the rest looked like typical large eggs. It used to be that they graded each egg, but now, it is just the total weight of the carton, so the actually eggs have much more variation. Really the only thing you can be sure of anymore is that you’ll get more total egg with XL. Still, I have found their yolks to be more consistently around 18 grams.
...I refuse to deal with Ina and her giant-egged recipes. Harumph.
Ha! This made me snicker out loud. How cute! Yes, you’ve convinced me to weigh my eggs. Matthew, that is very interesting about the egg carton weight being considered standard instead of graded eggs! Who would have known?
Taking deep breath and feeling obtuse re weighing the eggs: Weighing the whites, no problem. Weighing the yolks, no problem. The recipe calling for ‘6 eggs’ - weigh them kg. This would leave yolks and whites not differentiated. Lately I have been reading that because the egg yolks are showing up smaller, it is a good idea to add one. I guess this is what Matthew is alluding to by buying extra-large eggs. I guess I just answered my own question and will set out for the extra large ones for the Trifle.
I usually buy medium eggs because they are cheaper. But the brand I buy sure seems to have teeny tiny yolks. For recipes where the eggs are a major ingredient (cakes, especially sponge cakes), I always separate the eggs, weigh out yolks and white separately, and then combine them again if that’s what the recipe calls for.
A whole large egg should be 50 grams, out of the shell. I use that one yolk should = about 20 grams and one white should= about 30 grams. Seems like I always end up having extra egg white left over.
For things like chocolate chip cookies or scones, I don’t bother with all this. Some recipes are forgiving about this sort of thing. Cakes do seem to be “fussy.”