One Emulsifier To Do It All

One Emulsifier To Do It All Michelle
Due to the complicated interaction between a cake emulsifier and the other ingredients, several emulsifiers are often used together to create the desire products. The development of a universal emulsifier has the potential to change all that and bring in additional benefits. By Arne Pedersen, product and application manager, Palsgaard

Cake emulsifiers are vital ingredients in cakes due to the complicated interaction with the other ingredients, such as eggs, flour, sugar, milk powder, oil and cocoa. Often, several cake emulsifiers are used to create the desired variety of cakes and this makes the production more complicated due to the handling of several ingredients, resulting in a long list of ingredients on the label.

There are a few requirements for a universal cake emulsifier that will offer the desired properties which are highly valued by cake mix producers, the cake industry and end users.

The product must have a uniform performance in all types of cake mixes and a minimum of two years of optimal functional shelf life. This will ensure a uniform and long functionality in the cakes mixes, leading to satisfied customers.

It should be a fast and efficient product with a good tolerance to difficult ingredients, such as egg powder, cocoa and oil—in other words, a versatile and robust cake emulsifier.

In addition, the product should feature a smart emulsifier composition, which would open up the possibility to create cakes with lower amounts of saturated fats and at the same time, result in a shorter list of ingredient.

Finally, the cake emulsifier should be able to facilitate the production of almost all types of cakes by recipe engineering, producing quality cake products even with cost considerations.

Through intensive performance and shelf-life research conducted in in-house application laboratories and several production sites, a cake emulsifier has been developed and fine-tuned to meet these demands.

The product possesses three major and important benefits:
  • Good stability over a minimum 24 month period.
  • Stable batch-to-batch performance.
  • Good tolerance.

Apart from these three main properties, the emulsifier offers other potential benefits as well.

Ann, Russia
Ann, Russia

Stability & Performance

The emulsifier is created based on specially selected polyglycerol esters and mono- and diglycerides, which has been optimised to offer good performance in cake systems. It is activated on rice starch in a sophisticated extrusion process, resulting in a convenient free flowing off-white powder.

Activated cake emulsifiers are extruded emulsifier systems distributed on a food carrier. The process creates a large surface area of several sq m in a single gram. The effect is instant functionality, fast uptake and incorporation of air into a cake batter, leading to improved stability and good cake quality.

The whipping active emulsifier is fixed to the outer surface of the starch particles during the extrusion process and has proven to be stable in functionality during storage. The activation process provides instant functionality once the emulsifier is in contact with water and energy, in other words, when the whipping starts.

The continuous production process enables a functional uniformity which is tested in a specially developed aeration and baking control (ABC test) carried out on samples drawn with intervals over every production run.

As a standard, a random number of samples were drawn from the production runs and kept under normal fluctuating temperatures for at least the shelf-life period, which in this case is a minimum of 24 months. The functionality of the product is found to have remained the same over the period, meaning that it has the storage stability required.

Tolerant Aeration Performance

The product can be characterised as an all-in medium fast cake emulsifier, meaning that there is no need for adding the ingredient in steps. The aeration will start to develop after a minute and reaches its optimum level after five to eight minutes.

The risk of over-whipping is not an issue due to the stable batter created by the interaction between the emulsifiers and the protein in the cake batter.

A potential problem when making cake is the seasonal temperature fluctuations of the ingredients and the production room, which often leads to variation in the cakes. This is not the case when using the product doe to the tolerance to temperatures in the batter.

The whipping performance of a batter based on the product was tested with batter temperatures of 20 and 30 deg C and the performance in both temperatures was found to be very similar. In addition, the batters showed good stability against over-whipping with no significant changes observed from six to 16 minutes of whipping.

Recipe Engineering

Lesley Choa, Manila, Philippines
Lesley Choa, Manila, Philippines
Using only one cake emulsifier in various mixes makes things easy and when the components in the emulsifier are limited to two emulsifiers and one activating medium (rice starch), it can hardly be any simpler. Contrary to protein and sugars, which are common components in other powdered cake emulsifiers, rice starch do not add any colour to the finished cake.

This enables convenient and easy dosage changes in recipes without having to worry about a potential change of colour in the end product. Together with the stable performance of the cake emulsifier over a big dosage range, it is possible to make fluffy and light cakes, dense and juicy cakes, various crumb structures, as well as cakes with cocoa, high amounts of eggs and oil, with one emulsifier by simple adjusting the dosage and components in the recipes.

Being free of allergens, completely vegetable and free of trans fats, the cake emulsifier fits in all types of recipes from vegan to gluten free, making product development much easier.

As the emulsifier contains starch, the ingredient can be taken out of the recipe and replaced with flour to create a better balance. At the same time, this can also facilitate cost savings without changing the nature of the cakes.

Saturated Fat Reduction

The emulsifier is able to tolerate high amounts of oil in both aerated and non-aerated cake systems. In aerated systems, such as the typical Asian sponge cake, which is a highly aerated cake with an addition of 10 percent of liquid oil, the emulsifier is able to create a stable batter that can absorb and stabilise high amounts of liquid oils, resulting in a soft and delicious cake.

Non-aerated cakes, such as pound cakes, are often based on margarine or shortening which contain high amounts of saturated fats. With the emulsifier, all the solid fats can be replaced by liquid oil without changing the nature of the pound cake. The end result is the possibility of achieving a softer and juicier cake and an easier production process.

In general, this enables a reduction of the overall fat content and helps steer cake products to a healthier direction. Utilising the properties of the emulsifier, it is possible to replace up to 90 percent of the saturated fat in a traditional pound cake with healthier unsaturated fats, resulting in an overall fat reduction.


Uniformity, Robustness & Versatility

Uniformity is important for bakers and food services worldwide as it enables them to easily make the same delicious cakes every day under all climate conditions to increase customer satisfaction.

The uniformity and the batter stability are crucial for industrial bakeries as they ensure uniform cake production, no loss of batter stability during pumping or storage of the batter, and a resulting stable cake which can be handled and packed on highly automated lines without time consuming adjustments.

The robustness and versatility of cake emulsifiers are highly valued properties in retail mixes, where cake making is different from house to house. There will be variations in the scaling and egg size, added milk or water, oil or margarine, special homemade innovations, the whipping or mixing and the baking.

These are important variables which call for the emulsifier to possess stability and robustness.

The performance characteristics of the cake emulsifier makes it a good choice for cake mixes used by bakers and food services, industrial mixes used by cake factories, as well as retail mixes used by household consumers worldwide.

In general, the composition of the cake emulsifier provides the benefit of leaner labelling, easier product development, possibility of saturated fat reduction and overall use in various special products with claims, such as vegetable and free of allergens.

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  • Last modified on Saturday, 23 November 2013 15:59
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