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What is an emulsifier ?

Emulsifiers have been used for centuries and are a useful aid in our daily cooking. The effect of emulsifiers is comparable to using an egg when making mayonaise; the lecithin it contains acts as an emulsifier and makes it easier to blend all the ingredients into a smooth mixture. Emulsifiers affect the appearance, texture and structure of foods. They also help to maintain their quality and freshness. Emulsifiers have a positive effect on the crumb structure of bread, its softness and shelf life.