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Title: Development of a Benchtop Baking Method for Chemically Leavened Crackers

item Kweon, Meera
item SLADE, LOUISE - Food Polymer Science Consultancy
item LEVINE, HARRY - Food Polymer Science Consultancy
item Souza, Edward

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/2/2009
Publication Date: 9/13/2009
Citation: Kweon, M., Slade, L., Levine, H., Souza, E.J. 2009. Development of a Benchtop Baking Method for Chemically Leavened Crackers. Meeting Abstract.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Traditionally, the baking performance of soft wheat flours has been evaluated by well-established benchtop cookie-baking methods. In contrast, a benchtop cracker-baking method has not been widely explored or implemented as an official method, due to hurdles including the difficulty in finding ideal diagnostic flours and the absence of suitable benchtop equipment (powerful dough mixer, sheeter, multi-zone oven). Despite such hurdles, there is still a demand in academia and industry for a benchtop baking method to predict the contribution of gluten functionality and performance to overall flour performance for chemically leavened crackers. In an initial investigation, the effects of total solvent (TS) and sugar concentration (%S) were explored to establish a diagnostic cracker formula. Dough rheology was analyzed to evaluate the extent of gluten development during mixing and machining. The effects of enzymes on cracker baking performance were explored to assess the impact of damaged starch and pentosans. Validation of the method for predicting gluten functionality and performance was carried out using various flours. As the diagnostic formula, 38 TS and 23.7 %S were selected. Cracker dough rheology, measured in the direction of sheeting, showed a positive correlation with the ratio of cracker height to dough weight, but a negative correlation with the ratio of cracker width to length. Use of alpha-amylase and pentosanase demonstrated the improving effects of enzymes on cracker baking performance, resulting from decreased dough crumbliness and increased cracker height. The gluten performance ratio of SRC LA/(SC+Suc) was found to be a better predictor of cracker geometry than was the gluten functionality value of LA SRC alone. Flours with a gluten performance ratio < 0.52 produced blistering.