AIB International's Tip Of The Week: 3 Bases Of Chemical Leavening
by AIB International
Posted: 2017-09-12 15:42:03 EST

Baking soda is one of the best elements you can incorporate into your baking efforts. The ingredient lends to raising the dough. But like in all good things, chemical leavening, too, has its flaws. Baking soda can take a cookie from “wow” to “yuck” so it pays to know the difference in each reaction. AIB produced, Chemical Leaveners in Baking, a free ebook to help explain in further detail the science behind these biocarbonate sources.

Sodium Bicarbonate

Sodium bicarbonate is the most widely used traditional (alkaline) portion of chemical leavening. Commonly referred to as baking soda, sodium bicarbonate is inexpensive, easy to handle, has a high general purity, and lacks an aftertaste. It is an ideal carbon dioxide source and acid neutralizer.

Sodium bicarbonate is available in different grades based on particle size, which affects many qualities in baked products, including the solubility, reaction rate, and shelf-life stability. Grade 2 is most commonly used. When a faster hydration rate is desired, bakers often use the finer grades. Bakers choose coarser grades when looking for a slowed reaction. The shelf-life of sodium bicarbonate is three years.

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