Nature’s perfect package has been whisked, boiled and baked for millennia. From cloud-like meringue to hard-boiled, this adaptable protein has been used to create some of the world’s best dishes. 
By
Angela Nahas

28 Mar 2013 - 1:42 PM  UPDATED 6 Sep 2013 - 9:31 AM

Recipes

Italy
Spaghetti alla carbonara
Translating literally as 'spaghetti charcoal burners’-style’, the connection between this Roman pasta dish and the region’s coal miners has inspired many an Italian tale.

Australia & New Zealand
Pavlova
Inspired by the flouncy, white tutu of Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, this meringue-based dessert first appeared following her tour through Australia and New Zealand.

China
Tea eggs
A popular snack throughout China, tea eggs (cha ye dan) can be found around the clock at street stalls, night markets and convenience stores. They are also traditionally served during Chinese New Year celebrations to bring good luck for the coming year.

France
Quiche Lorraine
The original quiche (an open tart filled with a mixture of beaten eggs, crème fraîche and pieces of bacon) is believed to have been created in the 16th century in Lorraine, which shares a border with Germany (hence the word quiche stems from the German term for cake, kuchen).

Photography by John Laurie