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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Donelson, John
item Gaines, Charles
item Finney, Patrick

Submitted to: Cereal Chemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/18/2000
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Most cake flour and some cookie flours are treated with chlorine gas to improve their baking performance. Chlorine gas treatment is not allowed in many countries and a practical substitution for it has been the subject of several studies. All of the published substitution methods have had one main fault. They fail to produce a dry cake crumb that is resistant to compression and springs back when compressed, which are the main textural characteristics associated with chlorine gas treatment. We developed a formulation that does have cake crumb characteristics that are similar to those produced by chlorine gas treatment. We studied the effects of chlorine treatment on flour pasting viscosity and developed a baking formula that had similar viscosity characteristics. Resulting cakes had similar texture when produced using chlorine treated flour or produced using the new cake formulation. The new formulation replaces 40% of the flour with wheat starch, uses 18% egg albumin, 0.15% xanthan gum and 0.1% lecithin (all on a % flour basis). Cakes made from the new formulation do not require chlorine gas treatment, which may be safer for the consumer. In addition to possible consumer safety, cakes made using the new formulation will benefit the baker because they should be more sturdy during shipping and handling.

Technical Abstract: Chlorine treatment of soft wheat flour improves cake volume and produces a stiffer, more resilient crumb. Four pairs of chlorine treated and untreated flours were obtained. A selected portion of the area under the Rapid Visco Analyzer hot pasting flour viscosity curve was used to determine how much starch could be used with a nonchlorine treated flour so that the area is equivalent to that produced by a chlorine treated cake flour with no added starch. Replacement of nonchlorine treated flour with up to 43% starch produced areas under the pasting curve that were equivalent to those produced by chlorine treated flours. Increased concentration of dried egg albumen plus added soya lecithin and xanthan gum were included in the formulation containing starch and nonchlorine treated flour to produce a new "basic ingredient set". The basic ingredient set was evaluated for its influence on cake geometry, crumb structure and crumb texture response to compression (hardness and spring back rate). High-ratio white layer cakes using the new basic ingredient set produced similar or better cake quality characteristics as those produced using control chlorine treated flours. The same new basic ingredient set was used to produce pound cakes, cup cakes and sheet cakes using nonchlorinated flours. The geometry and objective texture of those cakes also were equivalent to respective cakes produced with chlorine treated flour. The basic ingredient set does not require any special flour treatment.

Last Modified: 10/17/2017
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