From smoothies and soufflés to meringues, macaroons and muffins, sometimes a whole egg just won’t do. Thankfully, after spending three months in LA (AKA home to the ‘skinny’ egg-white omelette), Anna Richey realised us Brits were wasting time separating eggs and spotted a gap in the UK market for liquid egg whites. Two years later, and with the help of old friend, Alla Ouvarova, Anna Alla Ltd was founded and Two Chicks Liquid Egg Whites were born.
That was in 2007 and now Two Chicks is a million-pound, multinational business with even Nigella Lawson, MasterChef-judge Monica Galetti and Lloyd Grossman counted among fans. So what exactly is it about egg whites (also known as albumen) that’s attracting everybody from celebrity chefs and sports people to weight watchers and bodybuilders?
Let’s start with the health benefits. Fat-free, gluten-free, cholesterol-free, low GI and low in carbohydrates, egg whites contain 70% less calories than whole eggs, while remaining high in that all-important protein (10.5g per 100g serving). All of the eggs from Two Chicks are pasteurised (making them totally safe to use uncooked) and sourced from free range hens – they’ve even got the pictures to prove it.
Liquid egg whites are also incredibly convenient. One 500g carton contains the egg whites of 15 medium size eggs (equivalent in quantity to approximately 10 medium whole eggs) and will remain fresh for seven days after opening, or frozen for up to two years. No more separating eggs also means you’ll not only save on mess, but wastage.
So what do they taste like? Thankfully, very little. After all, these are just straightforward egg whites and should be used as you would any other egg. What they do do is give substance and body to low-calorie recipes as varied as crustless quiches, ‘breaded’ fish and skinny pancakes – all of which are available on Two Chick’s website.
Egg whites are also in high demand with those embracing the benefits of a high-protein/low-carb diet. As a big fan of protein powder already, I was more than happy to adapt my usual recipes to include Two Chick’s Egg White Liquid. Three tablespoons of the Liquid Egg White are equal to one medium-sized egg, and the results were as consistent and reliably filling as ever – with only 23kcal per serving.
I’m also a big lover of the omelette and usually whisk up three whole eggs for a filling and low-carb lunch. Using Two Chicks Liquid Egg White was easier and cleaner than cracking eggs, and the omelette tasted just as delicious (and just as filling). Admittedly the lack of yolk did leave it looking a little anemic (definitely not one to photograph) but it was considerably more substantial and ‘eggy’ than I expected.
It really is a win-win situation and the £3 price tag seems more than reasonable for a 500g carton containing the egg white of 15 medium size eggs. So why stop there?
Available in three different flavours (Smokey Jalapeño, Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper and Sour Cream & Onion), Chirps are the latest product in the Two Chicks range and offer consumers a new type of on-the-go egg-white snack. They’re essentially a high-protein crisp, with all the taste and texture of your typical potato-based version. Even better, Chirps are low in sugar, fat and carbohydrates and only clock up 110 calories a bag.
Unfortunately Chirps are not entirely allergen-friendly (containing chance traces of gluten, nuts, peanuts and milk derivatives) but the key ingredients of egg white, rice flour and natural flavourings will sit well with the majority of those with milder sensitivities and intolerances.
Texture-wise they’re like they’re a firmer Quaver, with a crave-inducing crunch and enough handfuls in the bag to be satisfyingly, and surprisingly, filling. In terms of flavour, the Sour Cream & Onion Chirps are the most moreish, while the Smokey Jalapeño are like a fired-up bag of Nik Naks. That’s not to say the subtle combination of Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper is any less impressive, with the classic seasoning even making for an unusual high-protein alternative to breadcrumbs and croutons.
So will I be giving up on egg yolk forever? Probably not. But with so many different recipes, combinations and brilliant alternatives available (even Two Chicks Liquid Whole Egg), there seems little need to make such a compromise. Because Two Chicks have not only cracked the market for egg whites but developed a whole range of naturally healthy, convenient and genuinely appetising egg-based foods.