This section is from the book "Experimental Cookery From The Chemical And Physical Standpoint", by Belle Lowe. Also available from Amazon: Experimental cookery.
To determine the effect of using baking powder or soda and sour milk for leavening in gingerbread. Recipe:
Molasses Sour milk Fat
1 cup 1/2 cup
1/4 cup 1
11/2 teaspoons 1/2 teaspoon
1. Use 2 teaspoons of soda.
2. Repeat 1, but use 200 strokes in combining.
3. Repeat 1, but let stand 15 to 20 minutes before baking.
4. Use 3/4 teaspoon of soda.
5. Use 3/4 teaspoon of soda plus 1 teaspoon of baking powder.
6. Use 3 teaspoons of baking powder.
7. Use 3 teaspoons of baking powder and substitute sweet milk for the sour milk.
Appearance of crust
Shape of top
Color of crumb
B. Repeat A, substituting sorghum for the molasses.
What is the effect of soda upon the color of gingerbread? Does the baking powder affect the color? What is the effect of soda upon the gluten and the resulting texture of the gingerbread in 3 when the batter stands before baking? Why does it show more decidedly in the center and not so much at the edge of the cake? Would a less amount of mixing produce a better gingerbread?