Double D boosts Gadsby’s

first_imgGadsby’s Bakery in Mill Park, Southwell, is benefiting from the installation of a Humidair Retarder Prover from Double D Food Engineering (Broxburn, West Lothian), which it says has smoothed out “the peaks and troughs” in its production. “The Humidair Retarder Prover has been a tremendous boost for us,” says master baker Terry Gadsby. “By loading the unit the day before and setting the micro-processor controller accurately, we know that we’ll have 15 racks of product ready for firing exactly when we want the next day.”The Humidair Retarder Prover has a ‘holding’ feature, which allows the baker to control the timing of the retarding and proving cycle to suit. Even with just a two-rack oven, goods can be prepared in a 12-16 rack retarder-prover and the holding feature enables the goods to be loaded into the unit at random, allowing the baker to fire off the product and avoid over-proving.last_img read more

Julian Hunt, communications director, Food and Drink Federation (FDF)

first_imgFood manufacturers have grown used to engaging in the debate about the health of the nation in recent years. They fully understand why they have been challenged to play a positive role in finding solutions to the complex issues at the heart of society’s concerns about rising obesity levels. Now, they are facing a much bigger, and potentially even more complex, debate about another massive issue – the health of the planet.Recognising that issues relating to sustainability were shooting up the political agenda, and that these concerns were rightly starting to resonate with consumers, FDF established a Steering Group of members earlier this year, to provide industry with a strategic and proactive lead on the many issues it faces.The good news is that the industry is not starting from a low base. Take carbon reduction, for example. Between 1990 and 2005, the industry has cut its carbon footprint by more than 15% and it continues to build on this achievement through FDF’s voluntary Climate Change Agreement with government.That’s just one of the issues on which the industry has made real progress. And it remains actively involved in generating ideas on the measures needed to improve sustainability in areas such as energy use, water, waste and food transportation.But this is just the beginning: the industry recognises that it has an important part to play in the debate about how best to reduce our environmental impact – a debate in which we are clearly willing to engage.last_img read more

The Genius of Dr Allinson

first_imgThe words right are not those of a religious zealot. Neither are they transcribed from a holy book. They are, in fact, the Dr’s prescribed cure for zits.On pimples and blackheads: “To promote cure, all bad habits must be stopped. Tobacco in all forms must be given up. All stimulants, such as beer, wine, and spirits must be avoided. Drugs (especially arsenic) must be shunned, even though they are called “blood purifiers”. Good habits must be learnt. Meals must be limited to three a day; pig in any form must never be eaten, meat must only be taken once a day, or even every other day, and then not fat.”Next week: hints to shop assistantslast_img read more

Synergy aims to win by the nose

first_imgSynergy has launched a new range of bread aromas designed to enhance taste and reduce costs for bakers. The savoury ingredient specialist has designed the product in a number of varieties, including crusty bread, sourdough, soda farls and dough. The aromas allow for up to 20% salt reduction and, therefore, are particularly effective in reduced salt goods.”One of the toughest challenges for industrial bakers is to produce baked goods on a large scale that look, taste and feel like they were produced in a craft bakery,” said Steve Morgan, Synergy’s managing director. “Add to that the salt reduction targets set by the FSA and spiralling raw material and production costs and the obstacles are clear. Bakers need easy-to-use taste solutions that offer excellent end results.”[http://www.synergytaste.com]last_img read more

The Princi principle

first_imgA long-time destination for anything from gay bondage wear to, well, gay bondage, pockmarked with seedy snaking stairways and haunted by trench-coated gents shuffling into ribbon-stripped doorways, Soho is the scene of many a piquant fancy. Not least of these is Alan Yau’s altogether more salubrious fetish: opening eating holes.The Michelin-starred restaurateur has virtually ringfenced his string of hits within London’s central district, from the dim sum of Yauatcha to the contemporary Cantonese of Hakkasan. A majority interest in both was sold to an Abu Dhabi investment vehicle for a cool $60m last year, and a hole has been burning in his pocket ever since. A slew of potential projects were mooted, mostly around ethnic and fast food concepts. So when news emerged that Yau would launch Rocco Princi – a boutique artisan bakery already successful around Milan – in London, it sounded like an odd fit.Recent launches had irked critics. His last venture, Cha Cha Moon, was mauled by one as “a mingling of prison canteen and torture chamber”. Worse, another condemned it as “an insult to every man, woman and child who ever paid for a mouthful of hot food in London”. Easy, chaps. Yet one wouldn’t be surprised if the Hong Kong-born impresario did the same for Italian bakery in the UK as he did for Japanese dining with Wagamama, which flourished into a national chain. Early signs are that the Midas touch is still there with Princi (pronounced Princhy), judging by the rubber-necking pedestrians passing by on opening night two weeks ago, wowed by the pristinely presented pastries, pizzas and cakes. Ten satellite Princi stores have already been targeted within five years.== Lengthy design ==Rewind four weeks, when I arrive on the scene to witness the work-in-progress nearing completion. Yau greets the project manager with, “Ah! We need to change the front,” which in turn is greeted with a look akin to receiving an unwelcome biopsy. The lengthy design and fitting had already taken 15 months.Sat in the celebrated patisserie and tearoom at Yauatcha on nearby Berwick Street, Yau is casually dressed in t-shirt and jeans and is seemingly shy (he never meets your eye). The reserve evaporates as careful deliberation over questions ignites into flashes of enthu-siasm when he talks about the artisan/boutique crossover.”It’s a big project, it’s the first in London, it’s a flagship, it has a central production in the basement and it’s huge,” he says. A chance meeting with Rocco Princi’s Milanese ex-banker brought him under the radar of the Italian baker, whose name adorns the shops and who has been dubbed The Armani of Bread. “I was blown away by the product, especially on the bakery side of things,” he recalls. “His products, such as the green olive breadsticks, are truly incredible. And the fact he’s able to bake everything on-site – for me, there was nothing like it.”The consumer has three bites of the cherry: eat-in, take-away (lasagna, pizza) and retail (bakery, patisserie). The concept is ’eat-in’ and not ’sit-in’ – with stone pillars to stand around, thus encouraging a fast turnover of customers. “It’s very Italian; you buy your stuff from the counter, you pay for it and then you go to a shared counter where you stand up to eat,” he explains.Princi had fielded interest from overseas shopping malls, but rebuffed the approaches. “He wanted to maintain the Princi retail concept, to be an extremely boutique outlet, and so quality-minded that it became a high-end luxury brand,” recalls Yau. “I am the kind of person who is really inspired by quality. So we chat, and we get on really well. What he doesn’t want is to grow out the business on a mass-market model, as it were. He wants it on his own terms; he wants a qualitative expansion with a high level of control and with a partner he felt compatible with.”But the question remains: why has Yau chosen bakery? And, more to the point, why Italian bakery? The answer is a love of ethnic concepts that are easy to categorise, which makes the product list definable. “I like things to have a linear ethnic heritage. For example, Yauatcha is a dim sum teahouse, very Cantonese; Hakkasan is modern Cantonese; I find it difficult to execute a multicultural or fusion-orientated concept. From the pastry side, from the bakery side, from the pizza side, that (Italian) cultural linkage or relationship is much more logical.”That said, Yau has previously stated that an ethnic cuisine should be easily detachable from its ethnic origins to work in a mass-market – think McDonald’s, where Yau surprisingly once worked. Is this the case with Princi?”Princi is not fast food,” he corrects. “From my point of view, Princi being Italian is a good thing. Where we’d like to place Princi is as a boutique retail entity. I think we fulfil a niche that doesn’t really quite exist. What I mean by that is it’s not a Paul, it’s not a Patisserie Valerie, it’s not a Baker & Spice. I believe our bakery and patisserie will be much better than, for example, Ottolenghi [celebrated London boutique bakery]. But it has to be. You’ve got to see the unit – we have a wood-fired oven literally next to the retail, where you can see the bakers baking the bread in front of you. Apart from exhibiting a level of authenticity, you’re buying the bread straight out of the oven, and you can’t beat that.”But can you really square a fast customer turnover concept with being boutique and exclusive? “From a branding point of view, you maintain your pricing and the quality of your product to allow you to sit at the premium level of the fast food segment,” he reasons. “A car analogy is when the three luxury German car-makers, BMW, Mercedes and Audi, decided to go into small hatchbacks; they did it, but they maintained the niche by becoming a premium product within the hatchback segment.”So with the numbers of traditional UK craft bakeries having declined, while branded artisanal chains like Paul and Le Pain Quotidien have emerged, is the door opening for new high-footfall bakery formats? “My God, you may be on to something here! I’m smiling and I tell you why: the intrinsic layout of Princi has the capability to take this to a fast food operation.” There we have it: the future of artisan boutique fast food starts here.—-=== At a glance ===The business: A Milan-based bakery, patisserie and restaurant concept, which has launched in LondonPeople: Yau is the Michelin-starred restaurateur behind London’s Yauatcha and Hakkasan and the founder of Wagamama (since sold); Rocco Princi is an Italian master baker dubbed the ’Armani del Pane’; his son will run the bakeryOwnership: Rocco Princi and Alan Yau have an equal partnership in the UK, while Princi retains full ownership of Italian operationsPredicted turnover: £6 million p/aOpening hours: 7am until 1am, with a view to obtaining a 4am licenceAverage spend: predicted @ £6.70New twist: The first bakery to sell cocktails? It will serve Italian cocktails of Aperol, mixed with Prosecco, as well as a Campari with blood orange juiceNovelty: There’s not a panini or sandwich in sight. “No sandwiches! There’s enough sandwiches around already,” says YauExpansion: The ambition of the central production is to service 10 satellite units of between 2,000-2,500sq ft within five years, dotted around central London—-=== Rocco Princi, Wardour Street, Soho, London ===== The brief ==The site, previously occupied by an Indian restaurant, needed to house a French hand-built wood-fired oven, which would be visible from the street and within the shop, to showcase artisan bakers at work. The look and atmosphere was to be extremely architectural, with lots of stone. The format should allow for turning around customers with a short dwelling time. “First and foremost, it is a bakery, and I like to think our sourdough will be better even than Poilâne,” says Yau. “The concept is extremely Italian – both in terms of the product mix and the retail etiquette.”== The execution ==The layout and style was virtually copied and pasted from the latest fit in Milan. The 10,000sq ft of space was split 40% retail/60% production. Using Princi’s Italian-based architect, a lot of Italian stone was used for a minimal, solid look. The oven, which is approximately 4m x 3m and weighs some 80 tonnes, required a reinforced floor. An eight-deck pizza oven is visible in the shop. All the preparation and cooking takes place in the basement, but will be extended to a part of the ground floor as the business develops. All machinery was sourced by Ken Winch Design.The retail counter has four components: bread, pastries, pizza (sold by slice) and hot/cold food. The back wall counter offers alcoholic beverages (red wine in tumblers, not by the bottle), tea, coffee and soft drinks. You choose from each section and pay at the end of the counter. You can perch at the counter, sit next to a long table, stand Milan-style around raised block tables or take away. There is a casual seated area with stools along the right side, decorated with a water feature with taps.last_img read more

Five-year study predicts steady rise for bread

first_imgAccording to Key Note’s latest Bread & Bakery Products report, household expenditure on bread is expected to see a steady rise from 2009 to 2013.In 2008, consumer expenditure grew by 6.2%, to £3.8bn, and with the population expected to hit 63 million by 2012, by definition more people will be buying bread.Currently, 99% of the population rate it as a staple item in their shopping basket and Key Note expects total household expenditure on bread and bakery products to rise by 5% this year. Thereafter, it expects the amount to rise at a slower rate, with total expenditure hitting the £4.59bn mark in 2013 – a 2.9% increase that year.Looking to future trends, Key Note predicts the potential impact of the Food Standards Agency’s proposed salt reduction targets. “Plant bakers are likely to be faced with the need to invest in new machinery to cope with the stickier doughs that will result from the salt reduction,” reads the report.In terms of other issues the industry may face, in addition to the rising skills gap, the weak pound is likely to result in more Eastern European bakers returning home. “The situation is likely to get worse in 2011, when Germany relaxes its immigration laws and is expected to attract more Polish workers.”The Key Note report, published in March this year, covers all breads and bakery products, such as rolls, and scones, but does not include cakes and pastries.l Key Note is offering readers of British Baker the chance to purchase the report, normally priced at £460, at a special discount price of £368 – 20% off. Call Key Note on 020 8481 8750, or email [email protected], quoting British Baker Offer.—-=== Forecast: UK household expenditure on bread and bakery products at current prices (£m), 2009-2013 ===2009 2010 2011 2012 2013Expenditure (£m) 3,991 4,162 4,329 4,459 4,588% change year-on-year 5.0 4.3 4.0 3.0 2.9Source: Key Notelast_img read more

Face the Fats

first_imgIt is an unfortunate fact that bakers are being driven to manufacture products with less choice of margarines and fats and are being called upon, more than ever, to use their innovative and creative skills to turn bland ingredients into tasty, attractive bakery products. Saturated fats are the latest target of the Food Standards Agency, following the demonising of trans-fats of recent years, which have since been eradicated from most products.The removal of trans-fats, although necessary, was achieved by the total removal of hydrogenated fats, which was not necessary because fully hydrogenated fats are low in trans-fats. The irony is that they have often been replaced with palm, which is a fat that’s actually higher in saturates. Suppliers are now working to reduce saturated fats by using lower levels of palm-based products (not by using more, as incorrectly printed in the News Insight of 24 April BB).A recent FSA campaign recommended eating less pastry. Margarine and fat manufacturers took the decision to remove trans-fats long before the articles on alleged ’killer fats’ were printed in the national press. Likewise, we have actively been looking at ways to reduce the saturated fats in our products.It has not said to stop eating pastry altogether and those people who do want cakes and pastries want to enjoy the experience. But to make great-tasting products with lower sat fats, changes would need to be made to the fats you use and not all of them come cheaper. In fact, to maintain quality there needs to be an acceptance that there could be additional costs associated.Larger cake manufacturers tend to use seed oils, which are lower in saturated fats than solid fats. But pastry is another matter. Take quiche: a shortcrust pastry might use shortening, which is 100% fat. For that product you have the ability to reduce the amount of fat you’re putting in. One way is to use fluid shortening, so you’re using shortening more efficiently – you use less to get the same effect. The other is to reduce the total amount of fat going in by using a lower fat content ingredient, such as margarine; that way you’re using the same mass of ingredient but the margarine might be 80% fat as opposed to the 100% fat of shortening.Margarine is typically 80% minimum fat; if fats suppliers can provide you with a 60%-70% product, while still giving an acceptable eat quality, then your fat levels will be even lower, and consequently, your sat fats will be as well.You need to work with fats suppliers on your line to find out:a) how much of the fat you use is really effective; andb) how you can reduce that levelDepending on the application of the fat, you may be able to use one that contains higher levels of seed oils, which are lower in saturated fats. All fats are made from a blend of soft and firm oils, such as palm and rape or palm and sunflower. You can change the balance by engineering the process to utilise the fat to its best effect – using the least amount of fat to give you the quality that you’re looking for.By reducing the amount of fat, you automatically reduce the amount of saturated fats in the product. The goal is to reduce the fat to a level where there is still a perceived quality. If you’re making puff pastry products like sausage rolls, you need to look at the amount of fat going into the laminations. Laminating fat needs plasticity to work effectively and this is achieved through the use of palm oils. So you reduce layers or use a laminating fat that has less than 80% fat content. Increasing the proportion of seed oils would not be effective in a laminating margarine, which needs palm oils to give the plasticity. But higher amounts of seed oils can be used in the dough fat.We have even put a butter blend into a product, reduced palm, and reduced the saturated fat level. This results in a more expensive product, but a better quality product, and one with lower sat fats.So the trade-off is, if you go for softer oils that are more expensive, you can achieve reductions in sat fats, but your product quality might be affected and your price would increase. It’s up to us as suppliers to make sure bakers have the options to make those choices.? Stephen Bickmore is UK commercial manager of Vandemoortele’s Lipids Division—-=== Fats in oils ===Oils Saturates Monounsaturates PolyunsaturatesRapeseed 7% 58% 29%Sunflower 10% 12% 74%Olive 13% 24% 60%Soya bean 16% 44% 37%Palm 50% 37% 10%Coconut 87% 6% 2%Cooking FatsLard 39% 44% 11%Butter 60% 26% 5%—-=== Five ways to reduce saturated fats ===== 1. Reduced-fat margarines ==Vandemoortele has available laminating fats with less than 80% fat, but with maintained quality in the finished product. There are also laminating fats with less than 60% fat, but fat replacers have been used.== 2. Softer margarines and shortenings ==By blending more rapeseed oil with the palm and palm fractions, a softer, lower saturated fat product is possible. This product gives good functionality, but can be more expensive than products with less rapeseed oil.== 3. Replace fat with oil where possible ==Some recipes can use pure rapeseed oil instead of margarines or fats. This is the best nutritional option, but there are likely to be limited recipes where the quality of product can be maintained.== 4. Fluid shortening ==This is probably the most effective way of reducing fat content without losing functionality. The liquid shortening will coat flour far more effectively and efficiently than boxed fats, giving both a commercial advantage and a lower saturated fat product with maintained, and sometimes improved, quality.== 5. Recipe and process adjustments ==By looking closely at recipes and processes it may be possible to reduce the amount of fat with just a few recipe adjustments.—-=== Fat at a glance ===== Polyunsaturated fat ==Omega 3 and Omega 6 are types of polyunsaturated fat, which are both essential for life and growth, reducing the risk of heart disease. Omega 3 improves heartbeat regularity and reduces stickiness of blood, reducing the risk of thromboses. Rich sources include fish oil, linseed oil, rapeseed oil and soya bean oil.Omega 6 reduces LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. Rich sources include: sunflower oil, maize oil and soya bean oil.== Monounsaturated fat ==More energy-dense than carbohydrates, this fat leads to increased risk of obesity if too much is consumed.That said, it has a more desirable effect on cholesterol levels than carbohydrates and has a GI of zero, so does not affect insulin resistance. Rich sources are olive oil and rapeseed oil.== Saturated fats ==These push up LDL cholesterol levels, thereby increasing the risk of heart disease. Major sources include milk products, meat products and cereal-based products.In the UK, we take about 13% of our energy from saturated fats against the recommended level of 11%.== Trans-fats ==These increase LDL cholesterol levels and reduce HDL (good) cholesterol levels. They are therefore more harmful than saturated fats. Major sources include cereal-based products, meat products, fat spreads and milk products.In the UK we consume around 1% of energy from trans-fats against a recommended level of under 2%.last_img read more

…the science of cake cutting

first_imgHow do you cut a cake fairly, so everyone gets an equal slice? That’s a question that has troubled some of the greatest minds in history. Thankfully, technologyreview.com has reported on “a significant breakthrough” in this complex art. A mathematical algorithm has been found, which allows each person to have a fair share.According to Xiaotie Deng at Hong Kong City University, along with friends Qi Qi and Amin Saberi, the answer is simple. You cut the cake three ways, thus: “We study the envy-free cake-cutting problem for $d+1$ players with $d$ cuts, for both the oracle function model and the polynomial time function model,” they note. “For the former, we derive a $ heta(({1overepsilon})^{d-1})$ time matching bound for the query complexity of $d+1$ player cake-cutting with Lipschitz utilities for any $d> 1$. When the utility functions are given by a polynomial time algorithm, we prove the problem to be PPAD-complete. For measurable utility functions, we find a fully polynomial-time algorithm for finding an approximate envy-free allocation of a cake among three people using two cuts.” Glad to clear that up. Perhaps more tellingly, this reveals that computer geeks think it reasonable to scoff a third of a cake!last_img read more

National Doughnut Week raises over £25,000

first_imgAlmost double last year’s number of bakery shops took part in National Doughnut Week this year, and raised over £25,000 for charity The Children’s Trust. The fundraising event, sponsored by BakeMark UK, was founded by Christopher Freeman of bakery Dunn’s of Crouch End.For every doughnut sold during the week, a donation goes to The Children’s Trust – a charity, now in its 25th year, which provides specific care, education and therapy for children with multiple disabilities.The week was publicised on television, national and regional radio programmes and in the press. It also gained celebrity endorsements from Terry Wogan and Ainsley Harriet. At a ‘grand tally’ event to count total money raised, Freeman was presented with a certificate in recognition of his contribution to the annual event.last_img read more

Bakers needed for world cup bakery competition

first_imgThe search is on to find the nation’s best bakers to represent the UK in the Louis Lesaffre Cup. The ‘world cup’ of baking pits teams of three bakers, from around 40 countries across all five continents, against each other in a series of national and international heats.Each baker in the UK team will be required to demonstrate one of the three categories: bread-making, Viennese pastries, or an artistic piece made from dough – all of which should aim to sum up the spirit of the UK.The heats run between 2009 and 2012, and judging for the UK team, will take place at the Baking Industry Exhibition at the NEC from 21-24 March 2010.Lesaffre’s UK subsidiaries BFP Wholesale and DCL Yeast, along with Fermex – which distributes Lesaffre’s bread ingredients in the UK – are spearheading the search to find bakers from the UK.“Our aim is to find the people who will make up ‘Team UK’ – seriously talented bakers who are good enough to represent the United Kingdom at the Cup’s Western European heat in Paris in May 2011, and in further rounds if successful,” said BFP Wholesale’s MD Nick Harris.“We’ll be looking not only for superb skills and results, but a team spirit,” added Michael Abraham, DCL Yeast’s sales manager.The UK national heat is free to enter and is open to anyone over 18 who lives in the UK and is actively involved in baking. Each entrant must choose one of the three categories only for their entry. Entries must be submitted by email, with name, age, contact details and the category for entry, to [email protected]last_img read more