The unusual role of vegetables in bakery

4 March 2022 Market trends

According to the recommendations of dietitians, we should eat at least 5 portions of vegetables and fruit a day, a total of no less than 400g - mostly vegetables. For many people, including such an amount of food from this group in the diet is a big problem. But the food industry comes to the rescue and for some time now many products not yet completely associated with vegetables have been enriched with this additive. On the market we have cold cuts with vegetables , breakfast cocktails with a high vegetable content, meat pasta sauces with hidden mixed vegetables.

One of the products that goes exceptionally well with various vegetable side dishes is bread. Breads and rolls can be fortified with carrots, beets, spinach, parsnips, nettles, etc.

An interview with Arkadiusz Matraszek, a technologist in the Research and Development Department of Interfiber.

- Does adding vegetables to bread require you to change the production process?

- The type of baking mixes we're talking about contains dried vegetables. They are added in various forms: powder, grits, sheets, etc. They make it possible to produce high-quality bread without changing the production process. Of course, in some cases it may be necessary to extend the slow mixing time to evenly distribute the water in the dough.

- Are vegetables added to the dough used in dried form?

- In our case, yes, because we offer mixtures with a well-developed proven recipe. Of course, it is possible to add vegetables in a different form using standard raw materials and your own recipes - for example, olives. Dried vegetables are perfect for mixing, they are stable and do not interact with other ingredients. Furthermore, in the finished product, we can enjoy the crumb and crust specific to bread with the characteristics of the vegetables used - we are talking about the taste, aroma, colour.

- Do vegetables have a negative effect on yeast?

- We do not notice any interactions. Everything is done just like in a traditional dough without the addition of vegetables.

- How many vegetables can be in a bread dough?

- It all depends on the specific recipe and the assumed final effect, it can be from several to even several dozen percent in the mixture. It all depends on what vegetables we use and what results we expect. After all, we influence the flavourand texture of the bread - all these elements must be harmonized. The recipe must remain balanced, so we cannot go overboard!

- We cannot use dyes in baking. Can we use the addition of dried vegetables in this context?

- Of course, vegetables are colorful, so they will affect the color of the bread. Thanks to them, we will obtain non-standard baked goods with a specific color of the crumb. It is a way to distinguish the product among other similar products on the store shelf. Breads and rolls are very traditional products that require special additives or an attractive shape in a modern, contemporary formula. Some vegetables added to the dough completely change the appearance of the loaf - spinach, pumpkin or beetroot give it a strong characteristic color. Because they are a natural plant product, they can be used in accordance with all rules and regulations. Additionally, they add a specific aroma characteristic for vegetables, so they affect the flavor profile.

- Does the addition of vegetables change the use-by date of bread?

- We did not observe a negative effect on the shelf life. On the other hand, some vegetables, e.g. potatoes in the form of slices or grits, increase the feeling of freshness of the bread. The crumb looks fresh for longer period of time, is more moist and softer, which is definitely a feature that consumers want.

- Are they a significant amount in the balance of the recommended daily consumption of vegetables, or rather a trace amount?

- As I mentioned earlier, the amount of vegetables in bakery mixes varies and can even reach several dozen percent - e.g. potato. However, it should be remembered that to make the dough, in addition to the mixture, we also add flour, yeast and water. So the total amount of vegetables is decreasing. If someone hopes that eating such bread will significantly affect the balance sheet - it will most definitely not. But it is a good way to diversify or enrich your diet. The more diversely we eat, the healthier we are, so eating bread enriched with vegetables, herbs, seeds or seeds is highly recommended.

- Which vegetable mixes are available in Libra?

- There is a large selection of ready-made mixes, both those aimed at industrial bakeries and those sold under the Domowa Piekarnia brand. The most popular are: potato bread, potato bread with dill and onion, "Balkan Buns" - a mixture containing, i.a. pepper, garlic, parsley, fenugreek and savory, "Spinach Buns" - a mixture containing spinach and garlic. But the offer is much wider and of course we are open to ideas and challenges posed by our clients.

- Thank you for the interview.