When it comes to dividing, many specialty breads lend themselves well to extrusion. That’s because the fiber and pentosans in the dough act much like a colloid, holding water, which reduces on shear, noted Jay Fernandez, manager of Middleby’s Bakery Innovation Center

“Empirically speaking, we believe that the oils in the germ portion of the wheat act as lubricants, so they can increase lubricity and thus reduce friction,” he said.

Mr. Fernandez added that Glimek volumetric dividers include Teflon hoppers while its rounders rely on air or oil spray to handle sticky doughs. Intermediate proofers can be adapted to control humidity.

Mark Rosenberg, chief executive officer, Gemini Bakery Equipment/KB Systems, said many of its Gemini/W&P dividers reduce pressure to decrease dough punishment.

“We deliver systems with intermediate resting steps to relax the dough ball even further, and moulders with multiple sets of vertical and/or horizontal sheeting rollers can reduce dough stress,” he observed. “We also offer unique pressure-release rollers that help remove dough seams.”

Marion Montillot, application product manager, Mecatherm, observed that no-stress systems mimic the artisan baker’s approach for portioning up to 75% hydrated and fermented dough.

 Mecatherm’s M-NS divider uses the latest generation technology to divide dough without stretching it by simply cutting it at the right place to obtain the desired dough volume.

Matt Zielsdorf, director of sales for Fritsch, a Multivac company, said there is no difference between handling artisan-type and other typical pan doughs on sheeting lines. Bakers should focus on retaining the structure and stability of delicate doughs while using minimal oil and dusting flour to prevent sticking.

Soft dough processing, he added, gently handles dough during makeup while maintaining accurate piece weights.

For versatile production of artisan breads, Patricia Kennedy, president, WP Bakery Group USA, noted that WP Haton has developed modularized lines such as its Classica, Crustica, Baguetta and Easy Toast that create a wide variety of breads.

“Because of the dough friendliness of the line, ingredients such as cheese, tomatoes, onions, olives, nuts and others can easily be added in,” Ms. Kennedy explained.

This article is an excerpt from the October 2020 issue of Baking & Snack. To read the entire feature on specialty pan bread, click here.