How Baking Powder Works:
is a leavening agent that consists of a combination of baking soda, cream of
tartar, and a moisture absorber (like cornstarch). It has the action of
yeast but it acts much more quickly. It's used in batters where there is no
acid present. such as many baked goods: cookies, cakes, pastries, pies,
quick bread, etc.
makes these types of food products voluminous by allowing gas formation when
an acid comes into contact with it and/or when it's heated. Baking powder acts immediately
upon addition of water, therefore a filler (usually cornstarch) is added to
absorb the moisture and prevent premature activity.
Types of Baking Powder:
Double-Acting Baking Powders vs. Single-Acting
Most baking powders are double-acting, which means they
the baking powder reacts twice; contain one acid
that dissolves when it comes in contact with water and another acid that
does not dissolve until it reaches a higher temperature in a hot oven. This
type of double action ensures that the finished product is light and fluffy.
Single-acting baking powders are mainly used by manufacturers and are
usually not available for retail sale.
Food Chemistry Rule in Using Baking Powder
When creating a recipes, the
food chemistry rule is 1
to 1 1/4 teaspoons of baking powder per 1 cup flour. If too much baking
powder is used in your recipe, this produces big bubbles that run into each
other, rise to the surface and pop. There goes the leavening, and the result
is that the muffins, cakes or quick breads become heavy or sunken.
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