Lecithin often works in concert with its synthetic counterparts, mono- and diglycerides and polysorbate 60. Lecithin seems indispensible to bakers, as it improves dough handling, moisture retention, texture, volume, browning, and shelf life, all while improving the effectiveness of shortening and reducing the need for expensive and perishable egg yolks. It also serves the delectable purpose of keeping chocolate smooth and reducing “bloom,” that white haze of fat that sometimes forms on the surface of chocolate confections. Lecithin is also used to smooth out and bind ingredients in ice cream, chewing gum, and peanut butter as well as whipped topping, processed cheese, and dry beverage mixes. This is merely a short list of its emulsifying abilities: wetting agent, instantizer (helping things dissolve), release agent (in cooking spray), antidusting agent, and more. On top of that versatility, it’s high in polyunsaturates, cholesterol-free, and totally safe to eat.