Lesson Plan #26 Cooking With Starches January 1999 Topic Learning Objective At the completion of this lesson, the trainee will be able to discuss the different types of starches and methods of cooking used in Coast Guard Dining Facilities. Starches in cooking Used as a thickening agent. What are the different types of starches used in AFRS? Cornstarch Flour Pre-gelatinized starch Chemical Properties Actual thickening process caused by starch granules swelling up. The correct quantity of water (or fat) is necessary when adding to starches. Ensures correct food consistency Eliminates lumping Prevents thickened liquids from reverting to liquid form after cooking Starch Granules Heating temperatures Cornstarch and flour mixtures start to thicken at 144 to 162 deg F. These starches complete the final thickening process at 205 deg F. Cooking times Under cooking does not allow starches to reach their maximum thickening capability. Other ingredients High amounts of acid in food may prevent starches from setting. Guidelines for preparing sauces and gravies Located on recipe card O-G-1 Discusses the ingredients used in their preparation. Liquids Thickening agents Fats Methods used in preparation of sauces and gravies Combining Sauces & Gravies Prevention of skin on the surface of sauces & gravies Reheating Adjustments, what to do if sauce or gravy is too thick or thin. Cornstarch Has two identifying qualities Paste is clear or translucent Only half as much cornstarch as flour is required These qualifications make corn starch more desirable for use in desserts Sauces (cherry sauce, pineapple sauce, etc.) Pie fillings (chocolate, cherry, apple, etc.) Mix cornstarch in cold liquids before adding it to a hot liquid. Eliminates lumping. Stir continuously during cooking to achieve maximum thickness Flour General purpose flour may be used to thicken liquids. Soups, White sauces, Gravies, Pudding Twice as much flour may be required as cornstarch. Produces an opaque gel. Same procedures apply in cooking as in other starches. Proper temperature, time & mixing Pre-gelatinized starch Cold water soluble Requires no cooking in order to thicken. This makes it very desirable for thickening: Fresh, canned or frozen fruit. Advantages of using pre-gelatinized starch No time consuming steps. Heating and boiling not necessary. No cooking needed before adding fruit. Fruits remain whole and attractive. Retains uniform texture. Finished filling has excellent clarity and smoothness. Review What are the different types of starches used in the AFRS? What three factors are starch granules affected by? What causes the liquid to thicken? What recipe card can you find information on thickening agents? How much cornstarch will you need if substituting it for flour? How much cooking time is required for pre-gelatinized starch?
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