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TRICKS & TIPS to get the best out of "ANGEL MIX"

In order to be able to prepare high quality gluten-free Croissants, Fagottini, Puff pastry and Viennoiserie products with our Angel Mix Lievitati, it is important to carefully follow the recipes provided, and respect all the steps described.

In addition to these, you will find in this article a whole series of "Chef's secrets" that can be useful for you to prevent more or less important "disasters" and churn out high-quality gluten-free leavened products, without waste, beautiful to look at and delicious to taste.

Do not be scared, they are not rules to be memorized : these "tips" are the result of thousands of tests performed day after day, e they are offered to you to avoid (re)making the same mistakes we made, while we were fine-tuning our recipes!

They are in no particular order, as they are updated as it will be necessary to add others, the result above all of discussions with our customers.

SO..

  • It is important that the water used for the dough is cold from the refrigerator, even more so if the kneading is carried out in a particularly hot environment or during the summer season. This allows you to obtain a firm and well hydrated dough that will allow you to collect and laminate the puff pastry fat without problems.
  • It is important that the consistency of the dough obtained, before the lamination phase, is correct: it must not be hard or dry or too "dense", but compact, firm, slightly sticky, soft but tenacious, but not squishy or fluffy . It's better to increase hydration and correct it with plenty of dusting, rather than adding less water and ending up with a stiff dough or one with poor elasticity which easily tears apart and ends up in the bin!
    That's why it's important to do the first tests with small quantities of the product, in order to check the hydration capacity of the ingredients you're using and make the necessary changes, if needed.
  • Professional shortening is the best solution to obtain a well laminated dough, but excellent products can also be made with "everyday" shortenings, such as those found on the refrigerated counter of large-scale retailers. The substantial difference is that the former tolerates sudden changes in temperature much better and above all does not create major problems even if used in very hot environments, while non-professional margarine - when used in such conditions - must be refrigerated for a few minutes: this and the cold water used for the dough will ensure the right temperature and lamination can be carried out without particular issues.
  • The non-professional margarine to be used MUST NOT BE of the "spreadable" type and must have at least 80% fat. We have noticed that products rich in rapeseed oil give a lower yield than other types. This means that the product will have less development during the leavening and cooking phases.
  • The product is "workmanlike" when at the end of cooking it leaves the baking tray dry and has not lost any fat.
  • Avoid the automated leavening programs found in some professional ovens: these types of programs are designed for "normal" leavened products, while gluten-free products are in a completely different "class". The humidity necessary to develop a "glutinous" leavening is likely to suffocate the gluten-free product, compromising the final result which will be underdeveloped and with large "fractures" on the surface, which will cause fat loss and a poorly leavened, lightly flaky and heavy final product.
  • The best way to leaven croissants, bundles, etc. is to use a static proofer without humidity, at 42°C, but being careful to place the trays in lightly greased plastic bags. This will create the ideal microclimate for the development of the product, which will be able to leaven and grow in an optimal way. Alternatively, it is possible to put a tray with water, but it is imperative that too much humidity does not form, which would inhibit the leavening process. The recommended humidity is between 60% and 80%.
  • Our recipes are designed to be personalized by you. However, this does not mean improvising substitutions or modifications in the procedures, times and temperatures of leavening or cooking. If, in a given recipe, there is a type of starch and a certain amount of water, randomly modifying these elements could lead to the bad result of the final product.
  • If pastry is "chemistry", gluten-free pastry is "nuclear engineering", so attention to weights, temperatures, times, etc. it is even more fundamental!
  • It's difficult to find the optimal dough right away, so at least at the beginning make small tests with modest quantities of dough and if possible carry out the lamination phase by hand. Touch the dough, recognize its texture, feel how it reacts to handling, etc. it will allow you to predict and prevent future errors and you will learn to become familiar with the machining. It seems a bit "naïve" as a concept, in reality it is very important to combine the objective precision of quantities, times and temperatures with one's own dexterity and sensitivity: this is precisely the concept of "Craftsmanship" which has now been lost but which continues to be shamelessly trumpeted from the rooftops by those who boast of "artisanal" productions and then don't know the difference between a "simple round" and a "double round" or use ready-made and finished blends to which they only have to add water. But that's a whole other story..
  • Recipes are important, it's true. BUT it can happen that certain ingredients you have available have a different yield from those (albeit very numerous) that we have tested. A starch that requires slightly more hydration, a sugar with a lower degree of grinding than ordinary sugar: only this, for example, could affect the perfect outcome of the recipe, with a lower yield than expected. So again: yes, the recipe matters, but also be careful about the ingredients you use that may need more attention. And if in doubt, we're here to help. Always.
  • It is important that the doughs are prepared correctly but it is not essential that they are made as described in our recipes. If - for example - we write to work the ingredients in the mixer using the "hook" but you only have the "leaf", that's fine too. What makes the difference is that the dough obtained is well worked, smooth, homogeneous and elastic, without apparent lumps or irregularities.
  • Our recipes for croissants, pain au chocolat, etc. they have been tested with many different shortenings, both professional and "low quality" (the ones found in the refrigerated counter of the supermarket). The yield has always been excellent, regardless of the product used, but it is indisputable that some shortening have a higher yield, both in terms of taste and in terms of product development, during leavening and cooking. If the result you get doesn't satisfy you, try changing shortening! Side note: professional products are obviously more performing, and are easier to use even at high temperatures, such as in the summer time. BUT we have to admit that the best results, in terms of quality/price ratio, product development and yield and taste, were obtained with "every-day-use" shortening, on which we initially wouldn't have bet a penny but which, after the appropriate and due test phases, proved to be (almost) unbeatable, even compared to far more famous, expensive and difficult to find brands! Fundamental, don't forget, that THEY MUST NOT BE spreadable type shortenings, those ARE NOT GOOD. And of course, as we have repeated several times in the recipes, do not use butter to laminate: the leavening temperature is too high and the fat would melt, irreparably compromising your work.

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