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ThePieman

Technique: Egg Batter Dough – Problems with the making of...

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you're comparing something made on a large-scale commercial basis with something you want to make at home?  That, in and of itself, is a challenge.  Commercial operations have vastly different equipment that gives results you just can't duplicate in a home kitchen. 


Edited by JeanneCake remove random keystroke (log)
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1 hour ago, JeanneCake said:

you're comparing something made on a large-scale commercial basis with something you want to make at home?  That, in and of itself, is a challenge.  Commercial operations have vastly different equipment that gives results you just can't duplicate in a home kitchen. 

 

 

This^  Many commercial machines, especially extruders, produce a lot of heat which cooks the food and causes expansion without the application of traditional cooking methods. Some foods are almost impossible to replicate at home (Cheetos cheese puffs, for example) because they are unique products of the machine that makes them. There's a really good chance that the Chickos are simply cheap frozen eggrolls run through an extruding machine with a white flour & water batter that 'cooks' due to the heat of the extrusion process.

 

Other commercial foods are made possible by the use of chemical fillers, binders, flavor enhancers, dough conditioners, etc. Sure, a Modernist kitchen uses some of the chemicals, the difference is that we are trying to get the best (tastiest, most nutritious) possible product, whereas most convenience food manufacturers are trying sell as little of the cheapest possible product (usually filled with lots of air, like the Chikos crust) for as much money as possible.

 

Many of these foods, IMO, are not really very good or worth copying. I'd rather eat some frozen homemade leftovers.

 

I have to ask, why are you investing so much time in trying to reverse engineer cheap, factory-made frozen foods?

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I hear you but I think you might be putting the cart before the horse, so to speak. This product is 20cm long and roughly 4-5 cm in diameter, so extrusion effects may impact dough characteristics, but this is not an extruded product its rolled, cut and possibly manually finished. Since the seaming of the dough is straight and not spiralled, I do not think that the product is rolled in a single industrial length and then cut, I believe it is cut to length and then folded/rolled.

 

Be that as it may, industrial commercial processes being forever interesting for the curious; this product started on a home kitchen bench, and then was scaled up for manual production long before it ever became an industrially machined product. This means that the recipe would have also been modified to meet the demands and rigours of industrial processing. Hence it is no longer an "egg batter dough." Believe it or not, the minutae of this process keeps me tossing and turning all night. Last night more so than usual. Lecithin...

 

Here are my thoughts. (..and we touch on Molec. Gast. here, woo hoo!  :P) Lecithin is an emulsifying agent, that helps to keep oil suspended in water. When we make shortcrust pastry, we use flour to coat the fat to help suspend it in the flour water dough and keep it in place. If we take this to be a type of deep fried pie dough, a very short dough, then I posit that oil water and lecithin are blended to make a stable emulsion, seasoned flour is then added to the emulsion to form a soft dough, the dough is processed in the normal manner.

 

If we take this idea back to the home kitchen to explore processes it might replace, the only thing I can think of is using egg yolk to form a mayonaise with the animal fat, thinning that with water to enable a smooth batter to be formed and then thickening that into a soft, pliable dough. I have both lecithin and eggs, so my next step is to see what comes of that. Thanks to one and all for being great sounding boards and helping me to focus better on this topic. I would never have even considered the Chiko Roll to a deep fried tubular "pie," not of emulsifying the fat before making the dough.


Edited by ThePieman (log)

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While lecithin is often used as an emulsifier (it's the 'magic ingredient' in Vegenaise) on the savory side of the kitchen, in the commercial bakery it's commonly used as a dough conditioner. It extends shelf life, allows products to be made with less fat, and makes the finished product softer. (it's a common ingredient in low-fat versions of baked goods) It is usually mixed in with the flour and other dry ingredients prior to adding fats or liquids. It's a really common ingredient, even King Arthur sells it in small bags to home bakers.

 

In this case, it probably helps make the wrapper easier to bite into or break cleanly, softening the thick dough just enough to prevent shattering. (ever had an egg roll just collapse on you after one bite?)

 

Here in the US, we have several TV shows that go inside factories and show various consumer goods and foods being produced. If there's any of these type shows in your country, you might want to search online lists of program topics to see if the factory has ever been on TV. Also, with the rise of social media, many companies will answer questions online. You might try asking them on FaceBook or Twitter.


Edited by Lisa Shock (log)

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1 hour ago, Lisa Shock said:

Here in the US, we have several TV shows that go inside factories and show various consumer goods and foods being produced.

Good suggestions, Lisa. I have tried to find some videos, indeed I did find one about Simplot Australia, but unfortunately it was rather cautious about showing various product under manufacture, and was no help in this case.

 

In what proportion is the Lecithin used in pastry doughs? That would be a useful ratio for determining a rough percentage of it in this product.

 

In the meantime here are a few pics from the last few days efforts:

Theme & Variations in basic egg batter dough.

IMG_9620.jpg

 

 

IMG_9621.jpg

 

Simple samples for frying

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nice dough, but the wrong texture. splits occurred due to sitting on a rack prior to frying.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lecithin In dough. Today's Effort.

IMG_9625.jpgIMG_9637.jpgIMG_9631.jpgIMG_9634.jpgIMG_9636.jpg

 

 

 

The setup. Pasta dough sheeter for rolling dough 15cm wide. Substituted tumeric and sweet paprica for the food coloring. Too yellow! Did lend a nice Indian-esque taste to the pastry though.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Surface response to frying. Still not right.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The seam here tended to pull apart as the tube and contents heated up. It occurs to me that the painted end serve a very particular purpose. I've always wondered why they always seemed a little broken open? Perhaps they're acting as pressure relief vales to stop the seam from splitting?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This time I decided to knock up some savoury filling to snack on along the way. Note the variation in doneness of the dough.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The dough was double rolled resulting an an inner and outer layer, which on one roll split completely. However, it is starting to lookp romising as to how the real product's dough has a similar variation in doneness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notes: Pastry outer was crisp and as you would expect from a really short dough that's been fried, thus is not like the original. The surface of the original appears, now, to not have been produced as an effect of frying: there are too many crags to the surface to be accountable to just blister formation.

 

Tumeric is not a substitute for synthetic food coloring, plus I feel it quite a lot effective, too effective in this case. In future efforts, I'll leave the coloring out completely.

 

The tubes need to have the ends painted rather than crimped closed as steam inside the tube tends to work against the sealing of the seam.

 

Have to try this again, with a thicker dough sheet, and also substituting egg yolk for lecithin. But how to get the texture?

 


Edited by ThePieman formatting of text and images. problems with text and images aligning correctly. (log)

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Turmeric is used to simulate chicken flavor in some foods. It's probably in the filling.

 

Lecithin granules are generally added with a ratio of 30g lecithin to 500g all purpose white flour.

 

Have you ever made egg rolls? The filling needs to be cooked carefully to get as much moisture out as possible, or they explode. You also need to be cautious about overfilling them. The edges are sealed with water, you dip a finger in water and run it all around the edges before rolling. Less confident cooks use egg wash instead of water.

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Very interesting topic! I've been thinking about mcdonalds fried pies lately, which have a similar outward texture-in McDonald's case, I'm pretty sure the dough has been dusted with starch before frying to create the blisters, such as corn or wheat starch. And this is an interesting link:https://www.google.com/amp/s/mylastbite.wordpress.com/2009/05/14/trisol/amp/?client=safari

Best of luck, keep us posted!

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4 hours ago, Amymegan said:

rather interesting medium, thanks for the link.

 

5 hours ago, Lisa Shock said:

Have you ever made egg rolls? 

Yes. And Spring Rolls, and Vietnamese Spring Rolls, and the fresh ones (nem) also. no bearing on this though. This is not an Asian copy, but something else that came about because of Asian Spring Rolls being too dainty and delicate in 1950's Australia, i.e. not substantial and robust enough.

 

That being said, similar issues apply to managing steam buildup inside the roll. That's why I suggested the thin side caps may function as a steam release mechanism.

 

Now, lecithin used to emulsify the fat that goes into the dough, will also impact the dough characteristics, toothiness etc., as you mentioned. So, add it to the flour, or to the fat and water? Choices.

 

Tumeric is not an ingredient. I used as a coulorant substitute = failure. No Problem.

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The single biggest issue bothering me with this, "dough" is its external texture. Have you seen my video autopsy of the product? It shows the texture very, very clearly.

 

My latest insight, is this. If after various methods of making dough does not produce a physical texturisation of the outside surface of the dough when immersed in hot fat, then the texture, logically, is developed in some other way. I postulate the following: After making the dough, it is dampened, then rolled in wheat cereal (semolina) and shaken off. This is then misted and held moist for an hour, which would result in the semolina swelling. Drop this moist surfaced product into hot oil and explosive steam texturisation, along with the soggy semolina getting cooked in place, might just result in the texture I'm trying to reproduce?

 

That's where I'm headed next. Thanks for all of your insights. 

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all I can think of when I see the video and when I looked at the stock photos Kerry posted earlier in the thread  - is bread!  As if a thin slice of a pullman-like loaf was rolled out a little bit more then wrapped around the filling and the ends left exposed.  

 

It's too rough to have been rolled on a silpat (there's no tell-tale signs of the crosshatch pattern of a silpat anyway) but I still think that there's some industrial rollers sheeting a dough, then it gets cut/filled and then rolled to "seal" before being whisked through a bath of something (are these fully cooked when you get them and you're just heating them through (I admit, I just scrolled to the good part of the video and didn't watch all ten minutes of it :)

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6 hours ago, JeanneCake said:

(are these fully cooked when you get them and you're just heating them through...

No. They are either quick baked or deep fat fryer blanched partially, then flash frozen and packaged. They are then meant to be finished on site and on demand.

 

Tried bread, raw bread dough does not produce the surface texture when fried and doesn't have the denseness on the inside. pre-baked bread sheets have a similar issue. It does have a bread-like external temperature, I'll give you that, but the cross section is all pastry dough (of some sort)  ;)

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On 10/11/2016 at 6:15 PM, Lisa Shock said:

I have to ask, why are you investing so much time in trying to reverse engineer cheap, factory-made frozen foods?

 

I don't think your question has been answered, and I am embarrassed and sorry if it has. I'm following this not as an expert, but a curious learner.

 

I think the answer can be found here. He's missing something from his original home environment that's not available where he is now. I can relate to that, as many of us can.

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Correct. I'm sorry if I let that question pass, perhaps I should have addressed it.

 

What are YOUR favourite 3-4 home-grown fast foods? What do you miss when you travel, extensively, even if it is cross-country or interstate?

In China & Vietnam, I missed meat pies, chiko rolls, & dim sims, but most of all, Cheese. So, in China I developed a method of making fresh cheese from UHT milk. In Vietnam, I started a made-to-order Pies, Pasties, Sausage Rolls business and added a Weekend Farmer's Market Grill Station where I developed a Vietnamese variation of the Philly Cheesesteak sandwich, using all local ingredients sourced from the Farmer's Market. Every time I go back to Australia, a Four'n Twenty meat pie, a chiko roll, and a couple of steamed dim sims are always on the lunch menu in the first couple of days.

 

So, why reverse engineer these commercial nightmares? Because they are a deep and integral element of my childhood. They are the comfort foods that remind me of home, happiness and all that was good in the world. Can I make better quality versions? Absolutely. But, understanding the fundamental elements of the pastries that go into making these items… and the pastry is absolutely integral to the memory of these items: the tactile feel in the hand, against the tongue, resistance to the teeth, and all the rest. The filling is not as important, although it does present its own interesting challenges, as well as tangents into molecular gastronomy, regarding emulsions & thickeners, etc.

 

Lastly consider, why do people bother to try and recreate the "Original" Kentucky Fried Secret 11 spices and herbs? Why do people want to know how to make Chinese hand pulled noodles? Why to people want to recreated authentic Peking Duck, Tandoori bbq, Nan Bread... (the list is long.) For me? The point is in the challenge, in making it right, and to the standard as I remember it, to say, ahhh! that's it!

 

So, this is the foundation, from which the stepping stones to something more personal and possibly better starts.


Edited by ThePieman gramatical correctness (log)
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Just guessing, but based on this photo, perhaps the filling is wrapped in the main pastry, leaving the ends open, then sprayed with a batter all over, lightly sealing the ends. That would be tough to duplicate at home, but perhaps if they were dipped?

 

We would always get care packages of country ham and grits from our southern relatives in Louisiana when we lived in the US state of Vermont. You can probably find them up there now or mail order them, but not in the '70's when we were there. I learned to make crepes so I could duplicate discontinued ham and swiss crepes from Stouffer's company. They haven't been available in the freezer case for many years, but they are available at my house. I always make extra ones to freeze.

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Latest Update.

 

Emulsifying the Fat:

Ok, so I mentioned, emulsifying the fat with either lecithin or egg yolk. Well, I prefer the lecithin method over egg yolk.Both make robust doughs, but the egg yolk dough is, more tender, softer, if you will, and moister (translate as gummy on the inside) which impacts cooking time and doneness.

 

Wheat Cereal and Texture:

I had previously tried to coat the roll in a light coating of Semolina (wheat cereal, auf Deutsch - Grieß) but the result was sandy rather than craggy and rough. So I thought lightly pressing the cereal into the dough and then covering ith a moist towel might help the cereal to soften and swell with the moisture. It did somewhat, but not enough. I also thought that with swelling, it was more likely to 'pop' when fried. With two trials, one, lightly dusted and the other actually pressed into the dough, I've found I liked the result better when pressed into the dough.

 

This leads me to consider, that the wheat cereal is perhaps an actual component of the dough, i.e is is part of the mixture. This would also result in the semolina swelling and perhaps cause the resultant surface texture, as well as lend a bit more toothiness to the final cooked dough. I still have to try this.

 

Clagginess/Doneness:

Lastly, I've been using quite soft, moist doughs and feel this may be causing some of the problems with overall doneness of the final cooked dough. The original product is indeed, partially gummy when done, but not to the extent that my doughs have been. So here's the question? How does dough wetness impact the frying characteristics of a dough?

 

Addendum, Images:

 

Image 1 (img_9659.jpg) shows the dough covered with semolina and placed under a moist towel, the second one not yet covered. In the bowl is a paste of egg white and semolina (a bit too thick). 

IMG_9659.jpg

 

Image 2 (IMG_9662.jpg) shows the filling I'm using to fill the rolls. Honest to goodness meat and veg, no junk food here.

IMG_9662.jpg

 

Image 3 (IMG_9667,jpg) shows the roll being fried. I used a tamale press, for convenience, this time round rather than the pasta roller. I think in the future, I'll stick with the pasta roller, it makes the ends and seams neater and easier to work with.

IMG_9667.jpg


Edited by ThePieman Adding Images (log)
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Just a thought. Have you tried dough used for Brazilian rissoles or coxihnas? No egg in there and the dough is previously cooked like a panade. 

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2 hours ago, Franci said:

Just a thought. Have you tried dough used for Brazilian rissoles or coxihnas? No egg in there and the dough is previously cooked like a panade. 

Interesting idea - cooking the semolina in with it might leave the texture but avoid the issue of sandy bumps.

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6 hours ago, Franci said:

Just a thought. Have you tried dough used for Brazilian rissoles or coxihnas? No egg in there and the dough is previously cooked like a panade. 

I've not heard of this type of dough, what is it? Got a recipe?  :smile:

 

4 hours ago, Kerry Beal said:

Interesting idea - cooking the semolina in with it might leave the texture but avoid the issue of sandy bumps.

interesting point, I'm gonna have to look at this further. I'm also trying to work from a 1950's Australian context as well, so I'm not sure if this method may have been familiar to the creator of the roll, although it seems he was reasonably informed about Greek and Italian, as well as trad. Brit/Australian cooking. 

 

Is there a parallel that you're aware of that I ought to be exploring?


Edited by ThePieman (log)

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7 hours ago, Franci said:

...Have you tried dough used for ... coxihnas? 

 

I really have to say thank you for your comment, its given me lots to look at and turned my attention towards Italian/Greek/Turkish – Semolina/Polenta pastry. I never knew such pastry existed! Don't you just love the diversity in our culinary world? So happy! xD

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There is a commercial Italian product by Findus that is called "sofficini". I've happened to have a Brazilian/Japanese friend that introduced me to these fried pastries and wow, I've found the commercial sofficini. These things are coated with breadcrumb but maybe not your case, you can still try it. And pate a choux in fried doughs are a classic all around, in spanish croquettas or also in the French  pomme dauphine  (that is made with pureed potatoes and pate a choux).

 

I've two recipes tried with my Brazilian friend:

 

Risoles

120 g flour
200 g milk
1 tablespoon butter
pinch of salt

Mix everything on the stove until a ball forms and it's no more sticky. Let it cool before rolling with some flour.

 

For the coxinha I've this

 

Coxinha

½ liter milk
250 g flour
25 g butter
a pinch of salt
1/2 cube chicken buillon

My notes here say to boil the milk with the buillon and butter and drop the flour at once. Cook as before.

 

I've done multiple times the risoles but only once the coxinhas

 

As an Italian, I can tell you that besides the commercial product I'm talking about I don't think this is very much used method, and also here is a guessing. Good luck. I'm not sure it's what you are looking for but surely it makes a tasty dough.


Edited by Franci (log)
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An interesting aside: deep fried Semolina… seems to be popular in Indian cuisine, here's a fusion recipe, 

 the reason I present this is that I find the technique and texture interesting, however a batter would not be applicable to my application. Be that as it may, and having looked at the Brazilian mix, choux pastry, and polenta pastry, I think there is a convergence of ideas. Not yet sure where, but, still looking. My main Cooking references are dated, (AU)1934, (NZ)1938 and (AU)194-? so, these books are in the historical reference region that would be common knowledge for the inventor of this "egg batter dough." Its hard to accept that the guy came up with a novel, new, and previously unknown method of making essentially, deep fried pastry dough.Yet, there seems to be no historical record of anything that remotely resembles it – feels like I'm banging my head against a wall. It sure does feel good when I momentarily stop though…


Edited by ThePieman (log)
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So I was browsing the Chef Rubber site today and came across this in the food additive section, and I immediately thought of this thread.  I have no idea what this stuff is, or what it does (or doesn't do), but it strikes me as one of those things that a commercial operation would have that is not available to the average home cook. While it's possible that Chef Rubber probably ships internationally, there has to be some equivalent type of distributor or specialty trade retailer who is closer to you....? 

 

https://shop.chefrubber.com/item/501026S/Crisp-Coat/

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I think that Crisp-Coat is the same as Trisol - makes for a lovely tempura that is wonderfully crispy and remains so when it cools - but I suspect it wouldn't give the texture that he is after in this application. 

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