My go to bread is a much appreciated result of many tips from this site. It is a basic 75% hydration high-protein wheat bread that proofs in total for about 4.5-5.5 hours. I think it qualifies as a no knead bread.
I wanted to get a shinier and softer surface so I tried to brush on a white egg wash with a 3:1 whites:water ratio. I can't imagine this to be an issue.
I applied the wash just before I tossed it in to the oven at 240C -> reduced to 200C after the initial steam (about 40 grams of water I threw in) wore off.
The result was disappointing in that I didn't get it as shiny as I'd hoped for and the brushing looked like it was painted on, not a part of the crust. The crust also has none of the softness I'd expect from something with egg-white protein in it.
I hope my question isn't too broad, my immediate concern is, should I brush on the egg white just after final shaping: 20 minutes before it goes in the oven or is it fine to brush it on immediately before?
After the answers:
This is a poor reference: My main problem was that my electronic scale was off in an unpredictable fashion.