Technique of the Week: How to Beat Egg Whites

Use This Technique

Mixed Berry Pavlova ┬╗

Like creaming butter and sugar, beating egg whites is a critical step in recipes to trap air and create lightness. It's critical for puffing up meringues, chiffon cakes, angel food cakes, souffl├ęs, waffles, and many other dishes.

Improperly beaten egg whites (both under- and over-beaten) aren't aerated adequately, and as a result, the final product is dense, flat, and a big disappointment, especially if your arms are aching from beating those eggs by hand. But it's not hard to get it right, especially if you know a few tips.

This slideshow will take you through the process of achieving perfectly beaten egg whites, from the whole egg to stiff peaks.

About the author: Kumiko writes the blog Recipe Interrupted. She believes that having a few cooking techniques under your belt can help make home cooking creative and easy, and is excited to share these basics here on her regular column Technique of the Week. A graduate of Brown University, the Institute of Culinary Education, and a mother of two hungry girls, Kumiko is always trying to keep her Brooklyn kitchen smelling of something good.