Emulsification and moisture control properties cue the use of a new ingredient source — flour milled from microalgae — capable of replacing egg yolk. In this exclusiveBaking & SnackQ&A, Beata Klamczynska, manager, food application and technical services, Solazyme, South San Francisco, CA, discusses the specifics of its applications. Sally Aaron, the company’s marketing director, takes a look at is future in the baking industry.

Baking & Snack: What has been the experience of bakers using AlgaVia as an egg replacer/extender?

Beata Klamczynska: Due to AlgaVia Whole Algal Flour’s capability for moisture control and emulsification, bakers are able to use the ingredient as an egg replacer and extender in diverse bakery applications. In high-moisture baked goods, it can retain moisture and product quality during the freeze/thaw cycle. In low-fat systems, Whole Algal Flour also replaces hydrocolloids and binds water while enabling the cellular structure to develop without creating a gummy, sticky end product.

While our Whole Algal Flour does not replace egg whites for structuring, the ingredient can replace egg yolks on a 1:1 basis. For example, we have replaced all the egg yolks with our Whole Algal Flour in chocolate chip cookies and successfully maintained moisture control. Additionally, whole egg replacement is possible in gluten-based products such as challah bread.

What changes in formulation are required to accomplish this?

Ms. Klamczynska: Whole egg replacement with Whole Algal Flour is possible in gluten-based products, for example in challah bread. Up to 4% of Algal Flour can be added, depending on the amount of eggs replaced. If replacing liquid eggs, additional water needs to be added to maintain the desired viscosity.

If egg white is needed for texture, as in cakes and cookies, the formulator can reduce or replace egg yolk only. For example, we have replaced all the egg yolk with our Whole Algal Flour in chocolate chip cookies and successfully maintained moisture control. The formulator should replace egg yolk solids on a 1:1 basis.

Do you think the adoption of egg replacers will be a permanent change in bakery formulations?

Sally Aaron: There is a need for a more sustainable and cost effective egg alternatives for bakers. Whole Algal Flour is produced sustainably and in just a few days using a standard industrial fermentation process. In contrast to farm-raised eggs, this ingredient can be grown anywhere at any time and is not susceptible to environmental impact or disease. As this outbreak has shown, having a diverse toolbox would benefit the industry.

Editor’s notes: For a slideshow of egg replacer ingredients, click here. The July 2015 issue of Baking & Snack carries full coverage of the egg situation and egg replacer ingredients