According to Baking Science and Technology by E.J. Pyler and Laurie Gorton, one of the biggest impacts of fermentation on cracker production is the cracker dough’s extensibility. As fermentation progresses, the cracker dough loses some of its extensibility, most likely because of the increase in acidity during this process.
Mr. Pyler and Ms. Gorton reference research by Doescher and Hoseney (1985) that revealed that resistance to extension decreased over time during fermentation. This is important because unlike bread doughs, cracker doughs do not become fully developed in the mixer but when they are sheeted.
Research also shows that the addition of soda to cracker dough increases the dough’s extensibility, while adding salt strengthens the dough and increases its resistance to extensibility.
This article is an excerpt from the August 2022 issue of Baking & Snack. To read the entire feature on Cracker Processing, click here.