Ever wonder how the pros get those egg white cocktails super fluffy? It’s easier than you think! Follow along for pro-tips on how to get perfectly frothy whiskey sours, silver fizzes and any drink that calls for an egg white!
First, why on earth would you add an egg white to a cocktail?
Egg whites are ubiquitous in baking because as they expand they trap in air bubbles, creating an airy, light, pillowy foam. The exact same goes for cocktails. Eggs help lift and lighten the cocktail when they expand. They also increase the velvety-ness of a cocktail so its mouthfeel is enhanced and smooth. Combined with highly acidic fruits like lemon juice, eggs help calm down the sharper notes of your favorite drinks and mold them into super luscious, easy-drinking, and elevated concoctions.
Here’s how to separate the egg
Start with a good quality egg — organic if you can find it and a medium to small-sized egg (a little goes a long way!) and have your shaker tin or mason jar handy. Gently dent your egg on a blunt surface (sharp surfaces and corners can cut into the egg which can cause the eggshell to chip and fall into your shaker). Once there is a dent, gently pull the top of the eggshell away from the bottom. You should now have two intact convex pieces— one is the top of the shell (empty) and the bottom is like a small cup, holding in all of the egg white and egg yolk.
Here’s the trickiest part— it takes practice and you might lose a couple of eggs but I promise it’s worth it once you get the hang of it. The goal is to separate the egg white from the yolk, using the shell to retain the egg yolk. By doing so, the whites will cascade over the sides of the egg shell and fall into your shaker.
Over your shaker, gently take the bottom shell “cup” and slowly pour the egg yolk into the “cup” of the top shell— this should cause the egg white to spill out over the sides of the shell and into your tin while holding the egg yolk back. Repeat this back and forth until the egg white is adequately separated. If you get any egg yolk into the tin, start over.
Here’s how to incorporate them into any shaken drink
Now that you’ve got your egg white, it’s time to add your liquids and shake. Here is a delicious, easy-to-follow whiskey sour cocktail.
- 1 small egg white (always add this first)
- 2 oz New Deal Distiller’s Reserve Bourbon
- ¾ oz fresh lemon juice
- ¾ oz simple syrup (1:1)
- 1 lemon peel for garnish
In your shaker tin, combine all the ingredients except for the garnish. Do not add ice, yet. This is called a dry shake. Seal the tin as tightly as you can and with both hands dry shake HARD for 6 seconds. The egg will begin to expand and get frothy as it homogenizes with the other ingredients. Then, add as much ice as possible and shake again, hard, for 4-6 seconds. Using a Hawthorne and a mesh strainer, strain your sour into a coupe or martini glass and garnish with a lemon peel.
Voila—a perfectly frothy, aerated, silky-smooth whiskey sour that will make you want to add egg whites to all cocktails!.
Not into egg whites? Substitute 1 oz of garbanzo bean water (from a can—yes, trust us!) aka aquafaba for a similar effect. After all, protein is protein and it’s those fluffy “nets” they make when they expand that produce the desired effect!