While bread dough mixing may be all about gluten development, cookie dough mixing is predominately about effectively mixing fats and sugars and the even dispersion of inclusions.
During the creaming process, the machine mixes fats and sugars to protect those sugars from moisture. The idea is to get this done effectively with the maximum amount of mix for the minimum amount of energy. By knowing the number of revolutions per minute, the operator knows how much energy is being put into the dough. This enables bakers to use energy efficiently. “You don’t necessarily need to mix based on time; it’s based on energy,” said Brett Cutler, technical services supervisor, Baker Perkins Inc., Grand Rapids, MI.
Energy also comes into play with dispersing inclusions. Too much energy and the inclusions will be damaged. Again, it’s all about maximum dispersion with minimum energy. Doughs that are laden with inclusions, they will mix pretty easily. If there is a smaller amount of inclusions then dispersion may be a challenge, according to Mr. Cutler. Evenness can be measured by taking multiple samples throughout the mixing chamber.
Even dispersion becomes more challenging the larger the batch. To address this, Shaffer Mixing, a Bundy Baking Solution, engineered a new sigma arm design to provide a more thorough mix for large-batch cookie mixers.