Perfect the aeration and shelf-life of your cake gel
Cake gels are specifically designed to create a uniform distribution of right-sized, stabilized air bubbles or ‘holes’ throughout the cake. And to achieve this, they need to create a system that keeps emulsifiers in α-formed crystals as long as possible. This type of cake gel will continue to work its magic at every stage of the production process, and its softening effects will last for many months.
Achieving the right blend, however, isn't so simple. The quality of water and other ingredients, as well as process parameters, is a constant challenge for many cake gel producers. Palsgaard's emulsifiers for α-gels tackle such problems, helping to achieve the right results and ensure a consistent baking result.
Emulsifier applications and functionalities in cake gels
Distilled monoglycerides (DMG) create α-gels with excellent whippability in cake batters. The emulsifier interacts with the starch in the batter during the whipping and baking process, delaying staling and extending the cake's shelf-life.
There are indications that the C18:0 content in the DMG will have a positive effect on the functionality of the cake gels. Our findings indicate that the higher the C:18 content, the better functionality of the emulsifier.
The fatty acid composition also plays a role in the functionality of the gel.
Generally speaking, the whippability of the cake gel comes from C18:0 but the baking performance also depends on C16:0. This explains why compositions with C18:0 and C16:0 will deliver good baking results.
Unfortunately, α-gels are notoriously short-lived and subsequently change to the non-whipping active β-formation. Luckily, this process can be delayed by adding co-emulsifiers such as polyglycerol esters (PGE) and propylene glycol esters (PGMS). These improve α-crystal stability, prolong cake gel shelf-life and influence the softness and crumb structure of the final cake.
Propylene glycol and sorbitol work as solvents in the cake gel during production. Sugar and sorbitol affect the long-term stability of the cake gel, influencing the speed of recrystallisation within the gel. Sorbitol and sugar also lower water activity, and extend the shelf-life of the cake.