Le Foodist Paris Cooking Class

The Role of Eggs in Baking

Read more about our Baking Classes here

Standard culinary classes will teach you fundamental information about the roles of staple ingredients. Therefore, in one of these classes, you will naturally learn the role of eggs. Many dishes feature them cooked in various ways as the main ingredient, and recipes from cakes to sauces utilize it as an important element.

Therefore, although you can occasionally substitute other foods, egg plays an essential role in many recipes - especially in the world of pastry, where they are as essential as chocolate or butter. All in all, whether you're making cookies or breakfast, eggs are a staple element in any recipe. 

what is the use of egg in baking a cake or pastry

Cracking Them Open

Read more about our Baking Classes here

An egg is comprised of two main portions: the yolk - the yellow portion in the center - and the white - the proteins and water surrounding the yolk. Yolks contain the majority of fat, vitamins, minerals, and protein despite comprising roughly 1/3 of the total volume, whereas whites make up 2/3 of the volume with a fraction of the protein and calories. Both parts fulfill different but significant roles.

gastronomy pic mobile

Why do Bakers Use Them?

Read more about our Baking Classes here

Eggs are an important building block in many food recipes, which is why so many cuisine classes emphasize their importance. A recipe may call for yolks, whites, or the whole depending on its desired outcome.

  • The Role of Yolks

Due to their high fat content, yolks add flavor and emulsifying power to any batter. Fatty yolks enrich the flavor of many pastries and create a velvety texture. Additionally, the yolk uniquely binds liquids and fats together through an emulsion process. In cremes or custards, yolks add thickening when warmed gently over low heat.

  • The Role of Whites

Whites can be whipped to create a stable foam that is often used as a leavening agent in more delicate goods. Sponge cake, for example, uses whipped whites for a lift. Whites can also be whipped with sugar to make meringue.

  • The Importance of Balance

The perfect cake requires a balance of elements. Excess flour, for example, causes dryness, and excess cocoa creates bitterness. Similarly, you must use caution when substituting yolk for white or vice verse. Too much yolk can overwhelm a dish with "eggy" flavor, and their tenderizing function weakens a cake's structure. Too much white, on the other hand, will create an awkward batter and a dry cake.

  • The Perfect Combination

Using the whole egg gives you the best of both worlds. They carry many of the emulsifying properties of yolks and act as excellent binding agents in batters. Additionally, they combine with starchy elements like flour to coagulate and form the structure of baked goods, and they contribute to the wonderful golden brown color and moist texture of many pastries.

How to Learn More

Read more about our Baking Classes here

Signing up for a quality cooking class is the best way to further your culinary education. An introductory course will introduce a number of fundamental concepts like standard techniques as well as ingredient purpose and versatility. 

For more information, please refer to the following pages:


Read more about our Baking Classes here

  1. What happens if you put too many eggs in a cake?

Although eggs are an essential ingredient in cake baking, adding too many of them can make for a baking disaster. In baking a cake, eggs are primarily used for two purposes—emulsification and structure. Egg yolks contain proteins called emulsifiers that mix with both fats and liquids, so egg yolks play an important role in ensuring your batter is smooth and well-mixed. Eggs also contain a variety of proteins that create the structure of a cake, and when beaten, they can act as a leavening agent by adding air to the cake batter.

However, if you add too many eggs to your cake batter, then your end result could be spongy, rubbery, or dense. Like flour, eggs build structure in a cake, so they make a cake batter more bonded and dense. When eggs are balanced with liquids and fats like water, oil, and butter, they ensure that your cake doesn’t turn into a soupy mess, but adding too many of them adds too much structure, leaving you with a cake that’s rubbery and dense.

  1. What happens if you bake a cake without eggs?

If you bake a cake without eggs, then you lose an important structure-building component, so you may end up with a cake that is flat and dense yet falls apart easily. The proteins found in eggs create bonds between fats and liquids to create a more cohesive batter, and they also provide structure as a leavening agent—especially when they are beaten. By removing this structure-building ingredient, you make the cake less structurally sound, so it becomes less fluffy and more likely to fall apart. Additionally, eggs also add to the cake’s flavor profile, so cakes without eggs may taste too sugary.

If you must forego eggs in your cake for dietary reasons, then you should find a substitute that suits your recipe. Certain substitutes, such as apple sauce and peanut butter, may be effective, but they will heavily impact the flavor profile of your cake. Chia seeds and soy protein mixed with water can also be a good substitution that does not impact your cake’s flavor as heavily. You can also use commercial egg substitutions to achieve the same effect.

  1. Why do we separate eggs in cakes?

Not all recipes will require you to separate your egg whites and yolks, but sometimes, you must separate them due to the different ways that each component impacts the end result. Egg whites are primarily comprised of proteins, so they play an important role in creating the structure of a cake. Egg yolks, on the other hand, mainly contain fat, so they add to the flavor of the cake and help create a smoother batter through emulsification. Therefore, bakers will often separate eggs to enhance the properties of both the yolks and the whites. For example, a baker looking to add a light, airy texture to a cake or meringue may whip egg whites to add more structure and leavening to the batter, or a baker looking to emulsify a batter may add egg yolks separately into the batter. Separating eggs therefore allows bakers to utilize certain important properties of the eggs.

  1. Does egg size matter in baking?

Yes, egg size does matter in baking. While no two eggs are exactly the same, they are sorted and sold by size to give cooks and bakers a reference for how much egg they are adding to a particular recipe. For instance, a medium egg has a lower volume than a large egg, so if you add a medium egg to a batter, you are adding less egg than if you used a large egg.

While some recipes, such as scrambled eggs, may not require you to use a certain egg size, many baking recipes do. Baking is an exact science, and recipes often contain exact proportions that you must use to achieve your desired result. So, if you use four extra-large eggs instead of four large eggs, you will add too much egg to a batter, which could result in a product that tastes eggy and is spongy and dense.

  1. Why is egg wash so popular in making pastry?

If you read pastry recipes, you’ll quickly find that many of them call for an egg wash. An egg wash is a mixture of beaten eggs and, in some cases, milk or water that is brushed onto the outside of a pastry before it is placed in an oven. This egg wash is a popular step in many pastry recipes because it helps pastries achieve an appealing golden brown color. The protein in the egg helps make the pastry brown while the fat in the egg yolk gives the pastry shine, and any added liquid will help make the mixture smoother and easier to brush on. So, if you choose to do an egg wash with only egg whites, your pastry will not be as shiny without the fat from the yolk. In addition to this browning effect, an egg wash can also act as a binding agent to allow toppings to stick to a pastry or to keep pastry parts together.

  1. How do you whip eggs to make perfect meringue?

One of the most difficult baked goods to master is meringue. While whipping egg whites seems relatively simple, it is actually a refined technique, and small mistakes can make your egg whites unusable. So, to correctly whip eggs to make the perfect meringue, you must begin by ensuring that your egg whites are completely separated and at room temperature. Eggs are easier to separate when cold, but they will whip better at room temperature. Next, you will place your egg whites in a clean metal bowl, and you will begin to beat your eggs. Once the eggs begin foaming, you may add a pinch of cream of tartar. While the whites are whipping, you should begin to make your sugared syrup, but you must be careful to not over-whip your whites before adding it. Pre-sugared whipped eggs should have a thick consistency before you add the sugar. Finally, when you add the syrup, you should pour it down the side of the bowl, and you will continue whipping until the mixture is fully cooled.

  1. How can you replace eggs in a cake recipe?

Although most cakes rely on eggs for their light, fluffy texture, you can use a variety of techniques and substitutes to bake without eggs. Eggs primarily emulsify the ingredients in a cake and add structure to the batter, so egg substitutes must accomplish that purpose. Many vegan recipes employ mashed bananas, applesauce, vegan yogurt, baking soda and vinegar, or oil in lieu of eggs to emulsify and add structure to the batter. Baking soda and vinegar, for instance, instigate a chemical reaction that leavens the cake batter. Additionally, techniques like whipping oil and sugar or folding in dry ingredients will help create texture without eggs, and baking with a pressure cooker is a creative way to make a light, fluffy vegan cake. Eggless cakes can thus be tricky to make, but with the proper ingredients and baking methods, you can make a delicious cake without eggs.

  1. Can you use only egg whites in baking?

Many people opt to eat only egg whites or egg substitute because they are less calorie-rich than whole eggs, but in baking, replacing whole eggs with egg whites can be tricky. You can replace some eggs in a cake or cookie recipe with egg whites at a ratio of 2 egg whites per whole egg. Packaged cake mixes, for instance, have ingredients that mimic the emulsifying properties of egg yolks, so you will likely have little difficulty substituting egg whites in those recipes. When baking from scratch, however, totally replacing whole eggs with egg whites can be trickier since egg yolks play an important role in mixing ingredients and forming the structure of the cake. In general, most bakers advise that you substitute eggs as little as possible, but you can use a handful of techniques to successfully incorporate them into your batter. Using egg whites at room temperature, for instance, allows them to more easily mix into the batter.

gastronomy pic

And they do not have to do with what you will find in those markets. They have to do with when you can go shopping there. Open Air markets are only open in the morning. Typically from 8:30 am to 1:30 pm. And they are not open every day. As a matter of fact for the vast majority they are open either open every other day (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday or Wednesday, Friday, Sunday), or sometimes only twice a week. 

This is the case of the Bastille Market (Metro Bastille and Metro Bréguet Sabin )which is open only on Thursday and Sunday morning. We like to send people there because it is a very big market with over one hundred vendors. And it has a nice stand of Crêperie in the middle. Here you get a video of a lady preparing a crêpe there; and you can get that crêpe for only 3 Euros!
There is only one Open Air market open every day of the week, it is called Marché Aligre (Metro Ledru Rollin or Metro Faidherbe Chaligny) which happens on the eponymous street. It is an interesting market because you find all kinds of quality in that market – the good, the bad and the ugly. There is also a nice covered market in the middle of it called Marché Beauveau – sometimes called Marché Beauveau Aligre. On the contrary, Covered Markets are open every day, and not just in the morning, but also in the late afternoon. Typically from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm.

We are blessed with two markets close to where Le Foodist is located, so we can walk to a market every morning – sometimes it is the Maubert market, and sometimes it is the Monge market. Both nice with their own specififies. Last but not least, none of these markets is open on Monday. Do not sign-up for a Market Tour on Monday, you might never see that money again …

Choosing Ingredients in Paris

While all markets are different, they also have some things in common. First they work on specific schedules as explained before. But also you will find always at a minimum the following vendors: a Maraîcher – this is the name we give to people selling fruits and vegetables, a butcher, a fishmonger, a cheesemonger and a baker. Normally you will find several of each, with different levels of quality, organic or non-organic, local or not local (but mostly not local unfortunately).
And we explain how to recognize each of those of course during our Market Visits and Cooking Classes in Paris. But choosing ingredients can be daunting at first, because of the variety that is on display. A typical fishmonger will carry 20 different types of fishes, and as many shrimp and shelf fish varieties. A good cheese monger will easily carry up to 100 different types of cheese and obviously you could get over 100 different cuts of meat at a butcher (from the type of meat to the cut itself). And a normal Maraicher will carry between 50 and 100 fruits and vegetables as well.
This is what makes these markets so exciting – the variety of products, the beauty of their display, and the exchange you can have with most of the vendors. We give you tips though on how to make sure that exchange with the vendors go well – a few magic words, and everything will be fine!

Cooking in Paris

Obviously going to markets is nice, but actually knowing that you are going to cook what you find there is even more exciting. It is not uncommon for Parisians to buy a little bit too much food because they get so excited at the idea of cooking it all! But as most of us have hardly any space where we live, that can limit the enthusiasm sometimes. Because of the lack of space, Cooking in Paris can be quite different from cooking in the rest of France. And there are also dishes that are typically associated with regions which the Parisian will not cook at home – but taste when they visit friends or families in the various regions of France. However our kitchen has plenty of space, so we can cook traditional French dishes without a problem – whether they come from Paris or any region. And the most important part for us is to ensure that we share techniques much more than just recipes. As a matter of fact, we love to share a bit of the science behind what we do so people can better remember the “what” by understanding the “why”.

Sharing Stories

In November 2010, some experts from the UN cultural organisation, decided tha France’s multi-course gastronomic meal, with its rites and its presentation, fulfilled the conditions for featuring on the “world intangible list” of the UNESCO.
In this list you can find all kinds of cultural practices, including Mexico Day of the Dead festival for example. Importantly this is not suggesting French cuisine is better than other cuisines (even though we the French tend to believe that …). It is only saying that the gastronomic meal and what it entails is a very vivid cultural practice which people in France partake into on a very regular basis. That is why the same experts indicated that the French gastronomic meal is a “social custom aimed at celebrating the most important moments in the lives of individuals and groups”. And in that social custom, there are many parts: the attention we pay to the way we choose ingredients, how we pair wine with food, how many dishes we will present to our guests, how we lay the table, etc… But one big part of the cultural practice is that commensality (the fact of sharing the food) is always accompanied by sharing stories about …. Well, you would have guessed it, Food of course!
To us it is THE perfect example of how Food and Culture come together – actually we decide to share food is a considered a cultural practice. I would argue that it is true of all countries, regions, etc… As the way we relate to Food is such a big part of anybody’s identity. But as a result and to make sure you have the most genuine experience of French culture, after the a coking class in Paris at Le Foodist, you will share a gastronomic meal at a common table with your Chef and fellow participants to the class.

French Wine and Food Pairing

As mentioned above, one of the big cultural practices in France is choosing how to pair Wine and Food in general and Wine and Cheese in particular. We actually have a class which focuses specifically on this. As it is so important though, we always make sure we share white and red wines during our meals, chosen to pair well in our opinion with the food we cook. And being at the table together is a good opportunity to discuss about wine as well, with concepts such as “terroir” (to simplify, terroir means “what you do depends on where you are”) which are essential to grasp the way the French think about Food.
And all this will always go with a cheering “Santé” – which quite simply means, to your good health!

More About Our Baguettes Classes

Getting a bit technical during our Baguette Class in Paris

The French baguette, actually probably better known as the Parisian baguette has beome a true symbol of French popular gastronomy. A true icon of French life even - look around and you will see the Parisians strolling back home with their baguettes under their arm. But if you are French why would you learn how to do this? You can buy a baguette at any corner of Paris for about one Euro a piece.  But in our Baguette Class in Paris  you will learn how do this from scratch. It is somewhat technical, but also full of tips and tricks. But when you leave, it will have not secret left for you. From the original mix to the famous "scarification" through adding water to your oven through baking, you will see and do it all.

Learning more during your Baguette class in Paris: Croque Monsieur Bread and Brioche

This class is like all our other baking or cooking classes: totally hands-on. So you get to practice from beginning to end - and to taste at the end. But not only will you learn how to make Baguette, but you will also learn to make two more types of bread: the French Croque Monsieur bread. The basis for the classic French bistrot appetizer. And in your Baguette class in Paris you will also learn how to make your own Brioche. Probably the most indulgent bread you will find in France - if not the lightest ...

And you might learn some history during your Baguette Class in Paris

While you will learn the techniques to create - and get to taste - three classic types of French breads, you will also learn some of the stories on the origin of the baguette. Just beware it is still being quite hotly debated. What is for sure though is that the Baguette is absolutely part of today Parisian's life. A classic you will be able to take back home with you.

More About Our Wine and Cheese Lunch in Paris

Cheese and Wine in Paris

The pleasures we can derive from French cuisine can seem endless.  However two of the best known and loved French gastronomic heroes are French cheese and wine. Whether we talk about a Brie which actually comes from very close to Paris, to a creamy Camembert from Normandy, or a Comté from the Alps, French cheese has a delight for all palates. And of course, French wines are even better known whether from Bordeaux great wines or Burgundy sophisticated whites – all of which enthral wine lovers.  Well, at our course on cheese and wine in Paris you will come to appreciate that although each is delicious on its own, properly matched cheese and wine together can make the experience of each even more enjoyable and an absolute delight.

How to pair French cheese and wine

Because not all pairings are actually what people expect, at Le Foodist we have decided to call these experiences 'Daring Pairings'. Maybe because we like to step out of the ordinary to challenge our taste buds, but really all we try to do is give you the perfect match fo cheese and wine in Paris.  So not only will you learn how to select the best wine to go with your cheese, but you will also learn what are the big cheese families in France – there are actually only five, and this is one of the keys to great pairing. In discovering all these pairings of cheese with wine you will be convinced that indeed two things together can be better than the sum of their parts.

It is important to have fun with pairing cheese and wine in Paris

Beyond the tastings though, we have found that the best way to help our clients remember and re-use their experience is to vary the way to approach both wine and cheese.  That is why during our courses on cheese and wine in Paris we share sensory games and many an anecdote to bring the produce to life in your mind as well as on your palate. Overall we will feature four excellent wines, one Champagne and demonstrate to you how best each combines with cheese, letting your taste guide you along with our teaching.

Understanding cheese and wine pairing while in Paris

While for many top Parisian wine stores and restaurant wine lists can be confusing and even intimidating, we believe that after our lunch learning how to pair cheese and wine in Paris, you will feel much more comfortable navigating all of those.  And we sincerely hope your knowledge will help you unlock a door to a whole new world of enjoyment of French wine and cheese pairing.  At every step of the way our sommelier will also share unique tips and tricks to understand wines better and how culture and wine are so related in France; hopefully enriching your own experience as well.

Cookies user preferences
We use cookies to ensure you to get the best experience on our website. If you decline the use of cookies, this website may not function as expected.
Accept all
Decline all
Read more
These cookies are needed to make the website work correctly. You can not disable them.
Tools used to analyze the data to measure the effectiveness of a website and to understand how it works.
Google Analytics
Set of techniques which have for object the commercial strategy and in particular the market study.