All About Using Starch in Cooking
Experienced homemakers work miracles with ordinary products. Indeed, miracles tend to happen when you manage to see familiar, everyday things from a completely different perspective. The same applies to the use of starch in cooking, which we will discuss in great detail in this article. Are you ready to be surprised by what you will learn?
How to Use Starch in Cooking
In cooking, there are at least three types of starch: potato, corn, and rice. The first is principally used to make sauces, cutlets, and second courses, but the other two are best for creating delicate desserts and sweets.
The most common way to use starch is to make kissel. The dish is simple and requires a minimum of ingredients and effort, but it is thanks to starch that it gained recognition. Its soft texture combined with rich fruit and berry taste has made the drink a favorite of all generations.
It is customary to add a few tablespoons of starch to gravy to adjust consistency or to sauces, diluting the powder with oil, not water. Indeed, one of the main functions of starch is thickening and improving viscosity.
If you replace only 10% of the total mass of flour with starch, you can get a majestic sponge cake without worrying about your cake-making attempt going awry. This slight change in the ingredients will make your pastry light, soft, and puff, and help avoid a chalky aftertaste.
Chinese national cuisine has given us the tradition of rolling meat in a mixture of starch and spices. As a result, the crust turns out thin and crispy, simultaneously preserving the juiciness of the product, which is especially important when cooking chicken fillet.
Have you ever made ground meat for cutlets, but discovered the lack of eggs in the fridge? It’s no big deal! Use 2 tablespoons of starch instead of a chicken egg, 4 tablespoons instead of 2 eggs, and so on. If you have no starch either, grate raw potatoes and mix them with meat.
Adding starch to crepes makes the dough very elastic. Introducing it into the composition will allow you to fry surprisingly thin crepes, which you will not be able to do with flour alone. Be careful, though: add starch in small increments, and mix well after each addition to avoid the formation of lumps.
Indulge yourself in the pleasure of baking pies with cherries or liquid jam — starch comes to the rescue! Add a few spoons to the filling and see how quickly starch absorbs the excess moisture. No more burnt juice on the baking sheet!
A traditional Turkish delight recipe also incorporates starch. This oriental sweet is popular all over the world, and people have come up with many variations of the recipe. They all have one thing in common, though: you need to use a precise proportion of ingredients to achieve a delicate and soft structure.
You can substitute starch with additives with similar properties — agar-agar or semolina. This trick will work with kissel as well. Sometimes, as an alternative, you can also make it with flaxseed or oatmeal, which adds the necessary viscosity.
Do not forget that, by its nature, starch takes away from the main flavor. Therefore, it is worth increasing the amount of sugar or other spices so as not to end up with a bland-tasting meal.
We hope that after reading this article, starch will never sit on your shelf for long. We recommend trying at least some of the abovementioned methods! Do not forget to see our article on the use of starch in everyday life, which will also provide you with a lot of fascinating information. Learn new things along with us, and do not forget to save relevant materials for future reference!