|MadSci Network: Other|
In a single word - "functionality". There are numerous ingredients that are used in foods because they provide a specific physical or chemical benefit without imparting any of their flavor. Egg is an excellent example, since the subtle flavor of eggs are lost in many dishes containing eggs. Eggs can provide the following functionality (not a complete list): - White when beat in low fat systems form a foam that helps add volume to products. - Egg yolk has natural emulsifiers that help stabilize water/oil emulstions (salad dressing or mayonnaise as examples) so the components don't separate as readily. - Egg yolk also has a vivid yellow color that can help provide yellow tints to finished product. - Egg white is an excellent moisture binder, helping to make products juicier and more tender. Eggs are also an excellent source for many nutrients. While not normally added for that reason, it is a definite side benefit.
Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Other.