Muffins, Yes; Pizza, Maybe Not

Potatoes potential replacement ingredient for muffins

Published in the August 2009 Issue Published online: Aug 06, 2009

Potato toppings on pizza?

If you live in a place like South Korea, Thailand or Singapore, that's not unheard of. But here in the United States, it hasn't caught on just yet, according to Dave Fairbourn, USPB manager of Industry Communications & Policy.

Pizza Etang, a delivery pizza chain in South Korea, recently launched a new pizza featuring frozen red-skinned wedges from the United States. That product launch was the result of USPB efforts to find new channels and introduce new products into the foreign markets.

Utilizing potatoes as a pizza topping represents a trend in offering new and exciting products at foodservice in several Asian/Pacific Rim countries. Potatoes are filling this niche, and continue to expand into other breads and bakery items-not as a dough ingredient, but as a topping, in which the bread or pastry features potatoes as a key flavor. While many new products continue to emerge, how well these continue to resonate with consumers in these countries remains to be seen.

In contrast, the same efforts inside the United States haven't caught on just yet, and neither has incorporating dehydrated potatoes into pizza dough. This is truly reflective of how capricious tastes and preferences can be from culture to culture, nation to nation and region to region.

Incorporating dehydrated potatoes into muffin dough is a different story.

During Fiscal Year 2008, the USPB commissioned a study with AIB International to research the potential benefits of reducing some higher fat, higher cost ingredients with the addition of U.S. dehydrated potatoes in commercial muffin production.

The results of this study are available in "Applications Research on the Use of U.S. Dehydrated Potatoes in Muffin Production," a four-page color brochure. Baking trials were conducted on the use of various U.S. dehydrated products as a fat replacement system in cake muffins. The investigation included four different U.S. dehydrated products. Standard potato flakes, ground standard potato flakes, standard potato granules and fine potato flour were all used in a single muffin formulation.

The most favorable results were obtained by using 7 percent (flour basis) ground standard potato flakes, achieving a 25 percent reduction of added fat in the formulation. The nutritive benefits of this formulation in a baked muffin were a 7.3 percent reduction in calories, and a 23.1 percent reduction in total fat. From a bakery production cost perspective, the ground standard potato flake formulation increased yield 1.5 percent per batch, and reduced cost an estimated 4.6 percent per batch.

The muffins from the dehydrated formulations were subjectively evaluated for external, internal and eating quality characteristics using standardized AIB evaluation methods. Trained baking scientists evaluated the batter characteristics and finished product quality using a multiple attribute scoring system. These attributes included:

  • Batter texture, consistency and color
  • Muffin external symmetry, crust color and crust character
  • Muffin internal grain, texture, crumb color, aroma, flavor and mouth feel

The study, "Applications Research on the Use of U.S. Dehydrated Potatoes in Muffin Production," is available through the USPB by calling (303) 369-7783 or visiting www.uspotatoes.com.

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