The edges of our soda farls become gummy a couple of days after baking What is the cause of this quality defect

The dark gummy seam on the side of farls is generally caused by inadequate baking. This could be due to the following:

• The temperature of the hotplate being a little higher than normal, causing the farls to be ready for turning sooner than they should be and the farl being removed from the hotplate slightly sooner than usual to prevent the surface being scorched. This would mean that the centre is inadequately baked and tends to collapse during cooling, producing the dark seams.

• It is possible that the centre of the farl never reached a temperature high enough to inactivate the amylase enzymes in the flour. The latter may still be active in the baked product, though it is unlikely that this is the cause of the fault unless you have bacterial amylase present.

• The water-absorbing capacity of the flour may have increased, requiring the inclusion of more water at dough mixing. In this case the product may need slightly longer and cooler baking conditions than normal to drive off the additional water.

Continue reading here: Why is it that wine cakes do not break nicely if baked in overgreased tins

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