Fast, sweet and savory breads, good, appetizing, fast in execution, composed of the classic ingredients that we use to prepare a cake: flour, a liquid part, eggs, butter salt and sugar, yeast or any substitutions gluten-free, fat-free and vegan.

To make changes to pastry recipes we need to know:

  • la technique and mixing order of the ingredients
  • the precise weight non il volume di ogni ingrediente
  • the ratio  among the ingredients
  • which function plays every ingredient.

Technique and order of mixing the ingredients

In this post I talk about the “muffin method or direct mixing”, the fastest technique for preparing muffins and quick bread:

  • Dry and liquid ingredients are mixed separately.
  • The dry ingredients are added to the liquid ones, mixing not too much or too vigorously because the very worked doughs become hard and the muffins or quick bread are chewy and irregularly shaped.

Ingredient ratio

The ratio in the recipes consists in fixing the proportion of one or more ingredients in relation to the others. These proportions form the backbone of the kitchen profession, because when you know the culinary ratio it is not like knowing a single recipe, it is immediately knowing a thousand. Understanding all this is even more important when you need to or want to replace the ingredients of a recipe. The proportion of the ingredients and their weight also indicates the role of each ingredient in the recipe.

The calculation of the ingredients to prepare the traditional muffin and quick bread dough is proportioned on the weight of the eggs, calculating the average weight of 1 egg in 60 grams :

2 parts of flour: 2 parts of liquid: 1 part eggs: 1 part butter

Sugar is not part of the relationship of these types of dough because they can be both salty and sweet but also with a tendency to neutral to accompany them with dishes, condiments and sauces both sweet and savory. When we decide to prepare a fast sweet bread a good rule is to add sugary ingredients that have the same weight as the butter.

Even salt is not part of the report, when we prepare quick savory breads, the dose of salt must be calculated on the weight of the flour must not exceed 1% (1/2 teaspoon of salt on 225 grams of flour), and considering which others salty ingredients are present.

The leavening of these doughs occurs mainly due to the presence of baking powder. A good rule of thumb to calculate the right dose is to add 5 grams for every 110 grams of flour.

Once you have the ratio of the main ingredients, the variations are endless.

Functions and substitutions of ingredients

The flour provides structure, consistency and flavor.

Here you will find how to replace flour with gluten

The liquid ingredients (milk, fruit juices, water) moisturize the flour, dissolve the powdered ingredients, are the source of steam which helps to give volume to the baked goods.
Here you will find how to replace milk with vegetable alternatives
The fats convey flavors, soften, lubricate and gild the surface of baked goods.

some examples of replacement for those with sensitivity to dairy products:

  • oil cold pressed and nuts and seeds creams 100% replace butter in doughs where butter does not contribute to leavening. (Their composition is different: 100 grams of butter can be replaced with 80 ml of oil or nuts and seeds creams in salted doughs, in sweet doughs in order not to interfere with the taste of the ingredients it can be reduced to 60 – 70 ml).
  • cocoa butter in the same dose of butter
  • coconut oil butter and aquafaba home made, let it cool in the refrigerator until it becomes creamy and it will be perfect for preparing these baked goods (100 g of traditional butter are replaced by 75 g of coconut butter and aquafaba)

Some examples for those who replace butter or want to reduce the amount of fat and calories:

  • avocado (100 g of butter are replaced with 50-60 g. avocado, check the consistency of the dough and, if needed, you can increase the dose of avocado to the same weight as the butter).
  • soy cream (100 g of butter replace with 125 g of soy cream)
  • chia or flaxseed gel  they only replace half the dose of butter (1 tablespoon of butter is replaced with: 3 tablespoons of brown or golden flaxseed flour + 1 tablespoon of water, leaving to rest for 5 minutes before using it or 1/2 teaspoon of chia seeds + 1 tbsp of water letting it sit for 15 minutes before using it. The volumes of these fat substitutes are not identical, but the seed thickening capabilities are uniform with these quantities)
The eggs enrich the nutritional value of baked products with their proteins, mix added fats, provide color and flavor.

Here you will find how to replace eggs

The sugary ingredients provide the sweet taste and can help the leavening, give volume and make baked goods tender.

Here you find how to replace white sugar

The salt from flavor and in sweet products it creates a contrast with sugary ingredients increasing their perception.
The yeast, main protagonist of leavening in direct doughs such as muffins and quick bread, raises and makes the doughs grow in volume giving it a soft and spongy consistency.

To create healthy sweet and savory baked products, natural products must be used, the cremortartaro is a product made from grape must, it replaces chemical yeasts and behaves in the same way in cooking.

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