Author Topic: Sugar and yeast  (Read 467 times)

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Offline Pyrowhiz

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Sugar and yeast
« on: July 05, 2014, 01:36:51 PM »
I'm currently in the process of experimenting with the many variable that make a crusts's texture. I am currently playing with sugar content and how it gives it a little crunch and tenderness. However, i am not using yeast, rather i'm using baking powder for both time and controllability.

Here's my question. I know that yeast eats sugar and creates alcohol and carbon dioxide, but do i need to add some extra sugar to compensate for this effect, or will the sugar content be the same after fermentation? Let me know if i'm not being clear  ???
My mission is to master all the different styles of crust, know the ins and outs and why they are, to learn from experience, to have that firsthand knowledge that you just don't get from reading.


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2014, 02:08:55 PM »
Pyrowhiz,

That is a good question. However, there are both qualitative and quantitative aspects involved. For example, there are both single acting and double acting baking powders and which one you use and how much is used will be dictated by the particular product you are trying to make and over what time period. As for the sugars, there are enzymes in the dough that convert the damaged starch in flour to natural sugars. Normally, when yeast is used, part of the sugars are used to feed the yeast. But, absent the yeast, the sugars released from the damaged starch are available as sugars to contribute to the coloration of the finished product, through the Maillard reactions, and whether the finished product is a pizza crust leavened with the baking powder or a cookie, or whatever. But there is a time element involved in the sense that it takes time for the sugars in the damaged starch to be released by enzymatic performance. If the overall time period is long, then there may be no need to add additional sugar (sucrose or other sugar forms). But if the window is short, then added sugar might be needed to get flavor, tenderness and color (through caramelization of the added sugar and some Maillard reactions) imparted to the finished product.

It might help if you provide the recipe you are testing and other pertinent details, such as the type of baking powder you are using and the time frame over which the finished product is to be made.

You can see some of the factors and considerations involved from Reply 245 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=13686.msg140743;topicseen#msg140743. The thread in which Reply 245 appears is a long one but you might find other posts in that thread of interest since it is pizza related and involves chemical leavening systems.

Peter

Offline Pyrowhiz

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2014, 02:43:33 PM »
Well I'll definitely give that thread a look, but here's what I've been doing. I'm not looking or concerned with taste for the moment so I'm keeping it simple, but I'm more just curious about looking at how the texture is affected when I make two identical crusts that only have one variable changed. In this case it was sugar. I believe the following percentages were what I used.

All purpose flour: 100%
Water: 60%
Salt: 1.5%
Sugar (5% for one, 0% for the other)
Oil: 3% (i believe)
Baking powder 3% (pretty sure it's double acting)

I mix the ingredients and knead the dough until it's tough to knead much more, ball it and wrap in plastic, let it rest probably 20-30 mins, knead it again to I get the gluten formation, ball, wrap, and rest another 20-30 mins, roll out and cook.

Like I said before, I'm wondering how much of the sugar will get eaten by the yeast. I will eventually get back to using yeast and also add back in overnight cold ferments, but I'm working with how ingredients affect the crust at the moment, and I don't want to spend 2 days for one comparative test, so this seems to be working pretty well so far for what I'm trying to do. Admittedly, it may simply be something I need to play with when I get there, but it can't hurt to ask.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2014, 02:57:52 PM by Pyrowhiz »
My mission is to master all the different styles of crust, know the ins and outs and why they are, to learn from experience, to have that firsthand knowledge that you just don't get from reading.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2014, 03:18:28 PM »
Pyrowhiz,

Now that I see what you are doing, your approach seems to make sense.

Under normal circumstances when yeast is used, 5% sugar would eventually be broken down to simple sugars to feed the yeast, and whatever sugars remained after the yeast is fed would be available as residual sugar to contribute to crust coloration at the time of baking. How much sugar is consumed by the yeast would depend on the amount of yeast and also on the duration of fermentation and the temperatures at different stages, including during fermentation. Also, at 5% sugar, that amount may have an osmotic effect on yeast and impair its performance by leaching out yeast cellular fluids.

Absent yeast, and using a chemical leavening system instead, one of the dominant effects of sugar, and especially at 5%, is to retain more of the moisture in the dough. The reason for this is because sugar is a hygroscopic substance (it attracts water from its surroundings). What other effects the sugar will have will depend on the window in which the dough is made and eventually used. Forgetting for the moment the effect of 5% sugar on flavor and taste (sweetness), the other notable effects of sugar is on crust coloration. If the window for the dough is short prior to using, then the primary additional effect of the sugar is crust coloration. And the crust coloration in this case will most likely be due to the caramelization of the sugars. Normally, one would expect some Maillard reactions but if the window for the dough is short before using, there may not be enough time for the added sugar to be broken down into simple reducing sugars to participate in the Maillard reactions. There are some simple sugars in the flour itself, which are normally used to start the fementation of the yeast (when used), but they may insufficient to make a big difference in the color of the final product.

So, if I had to guess in your case, 5% sugar should give you a tender crust (and even more tender with 3% oil), sweetness, and crust coloration because of caramelization of the added sugar and some Maillard reactions. There will also be coloration and taste effects through denaturing of the protein during baking.

If we strip out everything but for the amount of sugar, on the assumption that everything else will be equal, I would say that the dominant impact of the added sugar is in increasing the tenderness of the finished crust and also increased crust coloration.

Peter

Offline Pyrowhiz

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2014, 03:49:06 PM »
Well I did this experiment last night, and as I was tasting the two crusts, the topic of this post came to mind. As you said, the sugar crust was a bit more tender than the non sugar crust, and it was also clearly more browned overall than the non sugared one.

Let me see if I understand you correctly then. Yeast takes simple sugars and converts them to the alcohol and carbon dioxide. The sugar that is added to the dough has not yet been turned into simple sugars, but if it sets uncooked in the dough for long enough, it will be converted to these simple sugars. Once the sugar has been converted to these simple sugars, the simple sugars, when baked, and not used by the yeast, are used in the Maillard reaction (which I understand to be the browning process when cooked, simply put). The remaining sugar that has not yet been broken down into simple sugars will both help to retain some of the moisture of the dough when cooked and provide a sweet taste as well.

Did I miss anything?
My mission is to master all the different styles of crust, know the ins and outs and why they are, to learn from experience, to have that firsthand knowledge that you just don't get from reading.

Offline Jackitup

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2014, 03:58:45 PM »
I will chime in and add this. If you are not already using it, change to "Aluminum Free" baking powder. Many, including myself note a distinct metallic flavor using the regular stuff. Whether or not this will change your amounts I don't know but from my experience the only thing I noticed was a better taste

jon
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2014, 04:09:11 PM »
Well I did this experiment last night, and as I was tasting the two crusts, the topic of this post came to mind. As you said, the sugar crust was a bit more tender than the non sugar crust, and it was also clearly more browned overall than the non sugared one.

Let me see if I understand you correctly then. Yeast takes simple sugars and converts them to the alcohol and carbon dioxide. The sugar that is added to the dough has not yet been turned into simple sugars, but if it sets uncooked in the dough for long enough, it will be converted to these simple sugars. Once the sugar has been converted to these simple sugars, the simple sugars, when baked, and not used by the yeast, are used in the Maillard reaction (which I understand to be the browning process when cooked, simply put). The remaining sugar that has not yet been broken down into simple sugars will both help to retain some of the moisture of the dough when cooked and provide a sweet taste as well.

Did I miss anything?
Pyrowhiz,

You got it  ;D. A good example of a high sugar crust is a Papa John's pizza crust. It also has a lot of oil that makes the crust even more tender because the oil reduces the rate of evaporation of the moisture in the crust.

Peter




Offline Pyrowhiz

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2014, 04:12:23 PM »
 :-D Awesome! That is going to save me many hours of shotgun style experiments! Of course I'll still test different variations, but I'l be able to make educated guesses now. Thanks a bunch!

I guess i have one more question then. What is it about the dough that causes the complex sugar to break down in the first place, the moisture and heat?
« Last Edit: July 05, 2014, 04:21:00 PM by Pyrowhiz »
My mission is to master all the different styles of crust, know the ins and outs and why they are, to learn from experience, to have that firsthand knowledge that you just don't get from reading.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2014, 04:22:55 PM »
Pyrowhiz,

If you are interested, for a more elegant discussion on how different types of sugars are used in doughs, see http://www.theartisan.net/dough_development.htm. I think your questions will be answered there but generally speaking, and all else being equal, increases in hydration and in temperature will have the effect of speeding up the processes, and vice versa.

There is also a good discussion of sugars in dough at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?p=26479#26479 and also at http://web.archive.org/web/20110404180707/http://pmq.com/mag/20071112/lehmann.php.

Peter

Offline Pyrowhiz

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2014, 10:37:09 PM »
I gave those links a read, and they were definitely interesting. I actually just finished a test of dough with milk vs water, and it would seem that there is some natural sugar in milk, to keep the discussion relevant. The control crust always has a very small amount of browning, and is somewhat stiff and anemic, but the milk added dough was completely the opposite. It had the nice color of the dough that i added sugar to before, and the tender quality of the dough i made adding fat when i was testing the oil vs no oil dough. It's truly amazing how i can see this stuff all coming together and making sense as to why it is the way it is and having this puzzle slowly making sense.
My mission is to master all the different styles of crust, know the ins and outs and why they are, to learn from experience, to have that firsthand knowledge that you just don't get from reading.


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2014, 08:50:11 AM »
Pyrowhiz,

The matter of using milk in pizza doughs is a whole 'nother story in itself, with its own set of principles. Most professionals avoid milk because of cost and since there are other ways of getting crust coloration and desired texture without having to use milk. Whey is one such example.

I think that you will find that when you understand the principles involved in pizza making, and when you learn the ranges of values of ingredients to be used and their interactions and what impact they have on results, your pizza making will get better. And if it so happens that your results are as predicted, that is usually proof of the principles involved and your understanding of them. You will be as happy with that feeling as with the pizzas themselves.

Peter

Offline Pyrowhiz

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #11 on: July 06, 2014, 12:01:14 PM »
Would powdered milk be any different? Or is whey still more economical?
My mission is to master all the different styles of crust, know the ins and outs and why they are, to learn from experience, to have that firsthand knowledge that you just don't get from reading.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #12 on: July 06, 2014, 12:42:52 PM »
Would powdered milk be any different? Or is whey still more economical?
Pyrowhiz,

I think these posts will tell you all you need to know about milk in dough  ;D:

PMQ Think Tank post by Tom Lehmann at http://thinktank.pmq.com/threads/milk-in-pizza-dough.13847/#post-84770

The PMQTT thread at http://thinktank.pmq.com/threads/milk-in-dough.407/

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=1873.msg16513#msg16513

Reply 1 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=8791.msg76201#msg76201

While most pizza operators do not use milk products, for the reasons mentioned in the above posts and threads, there are some pizza operators who have used such products, both previously and now. Examples include Vito's & Nick's (Chicago thin style), Pizza Hut pan pizzas, Godfather thick crust pizza, Papa John's thin crust, Donato's, Round Table and some Greek style pizzas. Vito's and Nick's uses fresh milk and Donato's used to do the same, and Greek style pizza dough can contain fresh milk, but the others--typically the chains--use the dry forms of milk.

Peter

Offline trblaze

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Re: Sugar and yeast
« Reply #13 on: Yesterday at 08:47:03 AM »
How's the baking powder pizza crust coming?


 

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