CONCEPT 45: LESS PROTEIN MAKES TENDER CAKES, COOKIES Flashcards Preview

THE SCIENCE OF GOOD COOKING > CONCEPT 45: LESS PROTEIN MAKES TENDER CAKES, COOKIES > Flashcards

Flashcards in CONCEPT 45: LESS PROTEIN MAKES TENDER CAKES, COOKIES Deck (72):
1

Does mixing batter (quick breads) as little as possible work for all mixtures?

No, it doesn't work for drier mixture such as cookie dough; the solution, in this case, is choice of flour.

2

While a muffin or quick bread can have some chew, a yellow cake should be what?

Really tender.

3

What gives cakes, cookies and breads their structure?

Gluten

4

Bread flours are designed to produce a lot of what?

Gluten

5

Cake flour is made from what?

Soft winter wheat, using the inner core of the endosperm, which is easier to mill into a very finely granulated flour.

6

Does cake flour feel finer than AP flour? What does this mean with regards to fat and liquid?

Yes, this means it can absorb the fat and liquid more easily than AP.

7

What is AP flour made from?

Mix of hard spring wheat and soft winter wheat.

8

In addition to containing less protein, cake flour is traditionally bleached with what? Does this help absorption?

Dry bleaches such as benzoyle peroxide and chlorine gas, so that the starches in the flour can absorb greater amounts of liquid and fat and form thick batters.

9

Why are thicker batters important for tenderness?

Thicker batters hold more air bubbles during baking, producing cakes with a higher volume and finer crumb.

10

Does bleaching affect gluten?

Yes, chlorine weakens gluten, helping to produce a softer, more tender crumb.

11

Does bleached flour leave an aftertaste?

Some people can taste an off-flavor when bleached flour is used, owing to the residual chemicals.

12

What Vermont miller introduced and unbleached cake flour?

King Arthur - the recommended cake flour; don't buy bleached of you have a choice.

13

Why is it hard to detect bleached flour?

Most cake recipes that rely on cake flour rely on so much butter and sugar that it is very hard to detect any off-flavor from the bleaching--you have to be looking for it.

14

TEST KITCHEN: YELLOW LAYER CAKE MADE WITH CAKE AND BREAD FLOUR. BOTH WERE STRESS TESTED ON RAMEKINS.

One of the easiest taste tests they'd been asked to perform; cake flour was tender while bread flour created an unpleasant, tough, resilient texture. Cake flour buckled under its own weight after 5 minutes, bread flour lasted 30 and still didn't break.

15

Why does bleaching do to flour?

Bleaching quickly removes the yellow color from flour, makes its proteins less likely to form gluten and helps its starch absorb more liquid.

16

When flour is first milled, what do some consumers find unappealing? What causes this?

The yellowish cast caused by yellow pigments called carotenoids.

17

What happens to the yellow pigments after a few months?

They naturally whiten.

18

Why don't manufacturers wait to "age" flour?

It is expensive so the process is expedited with chemicals.

19

In flours labeled "bleached," what chemical has likely been used?

Benzoyl peroxide or chlorine gas.

20

Does bleaching alter the protein and starch structure of the flour?

Yes, making proteins less likely to form tough gluten, and the starch more able to absorb liquid.

21

Are bleaching techniques easily detectible is simple baked goods such as biscuits?

Yes

22

This cake is usually described as "especially weightless, springy and moist."

Chiffon cake.

23

What is the issue concerning chiffon cake and frosting?

They are too light to stand up to a serious slathering of frosting.

24

Why would you add corn syrup to frosting?

Keep it glossy and smooth; since there isn't much liquid in a butter frosting, corn syrup helps dissolve the confectioners' sugar.

25

Box mixes rely on a number of chemicals to create what?

Volume and tenderness.

26

What do emulsifiers like mono- and diglycerides do for box mixes?

Improve the effectiveness of leaveners so you can get a taller, fluffier cake.

27

What does hydrogenated fat accomplish?

Guarantees tenderness because it's 100% fat while butter is only 80%.

28

Do cake mixes rely on food coloring?

Yes

29

Chiffon and angel food cakes rely on what for their height?

Egg foam

30

Why can butter dry out a cake?

It contains 16 to 18% water that can evaporate in the oven.

31

What did test kitchen add to their yellow cake that improved tenderness but maintained butter flavor?

3 tablespoons of oil to 10 tablespoons of butter; use two fats.

32

What happened when test kitchen replaced buttermilk with regular milk in the yellow cake? What does buttermilk add?

It produced a crumb that was slightly porous and so fine it was almost downy. Buttermilk's tang also adds another dimension to the cake.

33

Besides sweetness, what is sugar well known for in cakes? Explain.

Increasing tenderness in cakes by attracting and bonding with water, thus preventing the water from hydrating the proteins in the flour. With less liquid available for them, fewer proteins are able to link together, resulting in weaker gluten.

34

Why would you use confectioners' sugar instead of granulated for frosting?

It dissolves better and keeps frosting smooth.

35

When cocoa powder and a frosting that uses butter are combined, why is it difficult to detect any grittiness?

The cocoa butter crystals in cocoa powder blend with the fat in butter to coat and lubricate particles of cocoa powder, helping to mask grittiness.

36

Do bright yellow yolks have everything to do with a hen's diet? Explain.

Yes, the bright yellow color come from carotenoids. These substances are found in a wide range of plants that a true free-range hen could find merely by pecking around the farmyard.

37

Is there a contrast in the color of yolks between supermarket and free-range eggs?

Yes, the free-range hen's are much darker.

38

Do cakes with light and dark yolks taste the same?

Yes

39

The Hollywood stars of the 1920s were among the first to taste Harry Baker's what?

Chiffon cakes.

40

What is chiffon cake a cross between?

Angel food cakes and pound cake.

41

What are qualities huge, high cakes usually lack?

Tender and moist.

42

Who invented the chiffon cake? Tell the story.

Henry Baker, a Los Angeles insurance salesman turned caterer who had been wholesaling fudge from the kitchen of the apartment that he shared with his aging mother, in 1927. When the cake became a feature attraction at the Brown Derby, then the restaurant of the stars, Baker converted a spare room into his top secret bakery, with 12 tin hotplate ovens, and personally baked 42 cakes a day. The cakes sold for a remarkable 2 dollars each to prestigious hostesses and the MGM and RKO studio commissaries. The recipe had been kept secret for 20 years. Finally, having been evicted from his apartment and fearing memory loss, Baker sold the recipe to General Mills. There ensued considerable testing, but with only a couple minor changes to the technique and new name--"chiffon cake"--the cake appeared before the American public in a 1948 pamphlet called "Betty Crocker Chiffon," containing 14 recipes and variations in addition to umpteen icings, fillings, serving ideas and helpful hints. It was an instant hit and became one of the most popular cakes of the time.

43

What did test kitchen find with the classic chiffon cake? How did they fix it?

It was too dry and cottony. Using cake flour was the key but the entire recipe simply needed less. An extra egg yolk was added to help make up for the reduction in structure (less gluten). Not all the egg white were whipped either, adding the remaining 2 as is, to keep the structure without causing the cake to spill over the top of the pan.

44

What happens if eggs white aren't beaten to stiff peaks in a chiffon cake?

Anxiety-inducing instructions that state "DO NOT UNDERBEAT" hold true. If the whites are not very stiff, the cake will not rise properly and the bottom will be heavy, dense, wet and custard like; it's better to over-beat than under-beat.

45

What can you do if egg whites are over-beaten?

Smudge and smear any stubborn clumps with the flat side of the spatula to break them up without worrying about deflating the beaten whites.

46

All of test kitchens recipes are standardized with what flour?

Gold Medal, the best selling brand in the united states.

47

What is the # two seller of flour brands?

Pillsbury

48

How much protein do Pillsbury and Gold Medal contain?

About 10.5%

49

How much protein does King Arthur contain?

About 11.7%

50

Can King Arthur and Gold Medal be used interchangeably? Explain.

Depends on the recipe. In test of recipes with relatively little gluten development, such as cookies, muffins, and biscuits, both flours produced virtually identical batches. But in bread recipes specifically engineered to use AP flour (not bread flour) to create a tender crumb, such as sandwich bread or challah, the switch mattered. The extra protein in King Arthur produced more gluten when the dough was kneaded, leading to loaves that were gummy and rubbery in comparison to loaves that were made with Gold Medal.

51

How do you switch manipulate King Arthur to make it more like Gold Medal or Pillsbury?

Replacing 1 tablespoon of flour per cup with 1 tablespoon or cornstarch made King Arthur behave like Gold Medal.

52

Cake recipes often call for what temperature eggs? Why?

Room temperature because they incorporate into the batter more readily than cold eggs.

53

Is there a difference between yellow cake made with room temp eggs and cold?

The cold eggs had a slightly thicker batter and took 5 minutes longer to bake. Room temp eggs produced a slightly finer, more even crumb, but the cold egg cake was entirely acceptable; tasters strained to tell the difference--they're both fine for most basic cake recipes.

54

When can cold eggs cause problems? Explain.

Finicky cakes such as angel food, chiffon, and pound cake, which rely on air incorporated into the beaten eggs as a primary means of leavening. Cold eggs didn't whip nearly as well as room-temperature eggs and the cakes didn't rise properly. As a result, these cakes become too dense when made with cold eggs.

55

How would you quickly warm cold eggs?

Put them in warm (not boiling) water for 5 minutes. If already separated, just use a ban marie.

56

Ounce for ounce, what has more chocolate flavor than semisweet or bittersweet (which are 1/3 to 1/2 sugar)?

Unsweetened chocolate.

57

Does vanilla reinforce chocolate flavor?

Yes

58

What does chocolate contain that can ruin brownies? Solutions?

Starch, and using a lot of chocolate can negatively impact brownies. Switching from AP flour to cake flour makes the brownies fine textured, not gritty; baking powder also lightens the texture.

59

How should nuts be added to a brownie mixture? Explain.

Besides being toasted first, they should not be mixed into the batter; they steam and become soft. Instead, sprinkling the nuts on top just before baking keeps them dry and crunchy--toasting makes them even crunchier.

60

Does chocolate flavor suffer if over baked?

Yes

61

What should a toothpick look like for perfectly baked brownies?

Coming out of the brownies with a few moist crumbs still attached.

62

Easy way to remove brownies.

Create a foil sling; the two sheets of aluminum foil will be perpendicular.

63

What is reverse creaming?

Mixing the flour and sugar before adding butter; it creates less aeration.

64

Can replacing some flour with oats halt gluten development?

Yes

65

At its simplest, shortbread contains what ingredients?

Flour, sugar, salt and butter.

66

Traditionally, how is butter mixed with flour in shortbread?

The cold butter is cut into the dry ingredients as if making a pie dough. However, test kitchen found that beating the cold butter into the dry ingredients (reverse creaming) works better.

67

Why use confectioners sugar for a shortbread recipe that doesn't contain much liquid?

There's not enough liquid for granulated sugar to fully dissolve in this cookie dough, even in eggs; fine-textured confectioners' sugar gives it a tender crumb.

68

Why pick oats and/or cornstarch of rice flour to reduce gluten formation?

Oats contain very few of the proteins necessary for gluten development, plus they have a nice flavor; rice flour is acceptable but flavor is sacrificed.

69

Common substitute for cornstarch.

Arrowroot replaces it with a 1:1 ratio.

70

How should you bake shortbread cookies?

Bake high, then low, then off.

71

How was early shortbread baked?

Made by leaving the dough in a still-warm oven heated only by dying embers.

72

Since buttery shortbread expands in the oven, its edges flatten. How is this problem fixed?

Use mini spring form pans or molds.

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