Purpose of Main Ingredients in a Cake
No matter which cake you are baking, you always see some common ingredients – flour, sugar, butter, and eggs. The amount of these ingredients vary depending on the type of cake you are baking or the kind of texture you desire. Understanding the purpose of these ingredients in a cake will help you understand your recipe better. Also, you will be able to make modifications to the recipe to get the perfect cake as you like it.
Flour is the main ingredient in a cake. It provides a basic structure to the cake. The gluten protein present in the flour provides a honey comb like structure to the cake to rise and stay firm.
The main purpose of sugar is to add sweetness to the cake. When mixed with butter, the sugar helps in aeration process. It also provides brown crust to the cake through caramelization.
Fat, when added to the flour, prevents the gluten formation. This ensures that there will no elasticity and chewiness in the cake. Fat also makes the cake fluffy. When we mix fat with sugar, it cuts through the fat and creates small air packets.
Eggs are another of the aeration agents in the cake. When beaten through whisker, they double in volume due to large number of air pockets. When egg whites are whisked separately, they form stiff peaks which add stability to the batter. When egg yolks are added to the recipe, they provide richness, texture, and flavor to the cake.